Friday, 9 July 2010

the manchester kiosks - a note on Gilbert Scott.

Giles Gilbert Scott(1880 –1960) was last in a distinguished line of architects. his grandfather was Sir George Gilbert Scott, who built the Midland Grand Hotel at St Pancras station and the Albert Memorial in Kensington Gardens, whilst his father after a promising start was to languish in asylums and family hideaways for much of his adulthood.

our Scott is famous for his blending of gothic tradition with modernism. he was to become a towering figure in 20th century architecture, creating iconic buildings wherever he went. he was RIBA president for its centenary year 1933, completed battersea power station in 1933, the new bodleian library in 1937-40, rebuilt the commons chamber at westminster palace after the 1941 bombing had destroyed it, and designed bankside power station now the magnificent Tate Modern.

yet he is perhaps best-known for his work on Liverpool Cathedral. when the competition for a 'Design for a twentieth century cathedral' was announced in 1902, he was a junior employee at his firm and an inexperienced 21 year old - he had previously only successfully designed a small pipe rack! nevertheless he was one of the five architects selected for the second round of the competition (his employer's designs were rejected) and subsequently went on to win in 1903. it was to become his life’s work which he worked on until his death in 1960; the cathedral was finished in 1978.

he is now buried with his wife outside the main entrance to Liverpool Cathedral where a K6 can also be found installed in his honour.

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