Hamilton Mausoleum, Glasgow

International competition

       In the contemporary world, humanity has come to dissociate itself from the natural world like never before.With technological sophistication capturing minds young and old alike, our once fundamental connection to the earth has been forgotten. There has never been a more crucial time to re-establish that connection.
       Hamilton Mausoleum and its surrounding woodland is reimagined as a nature trail which serves to offer greater engagement with the wonderfully rich, natural environment. Four structures, along with the two existing, form a new path that weaves through the landscape while creating a stronger connection between the the Mausoleum and Gatekeeper’s Lodge. With each encounter, a unique perspective is offered with a watchtower, a boathouse and a classroom inhabiting the proposed structures, and the Mausoleum reinterpreted as a library centring on works celebrating the wonders and curiosities of the natural world.

The Mausoleum’s formal elevation announces itself within Strathclyde Park and has become emblematic of its presence when seen from the passing M74 motorway. Together with the newly proposed watchtower, this aspect is revived with the brightly coloured structure echoing the assertiveness of the existing building, whilst adding a degree of playfulness to its context.
        The site edge to the south is redefined through planting, forming a more welcoming and legible entrance to the Gatekeeper’s Lodge. The existing entry path is broadened to create a stronger link between the site and the adjacent road, and columns of light act as beacons within the woodland, signifying both point of arrival and commencement of the nature trail.

The fabric of the Mausoleum remains relatively undisturbed with the exception of subtle alterations which effectively redefine the structure. The crypt is repurposed as the primary point of entry to the building whereby visitors may ascend a winding stair before arriving within the grand hall. The library is imagined as a three tiered structure constructed from soft timbers, establishing a contrast within the space between old and new.
       Acting as primary point of arrival, considerable alterations are proposed for the decaying Gatekeeper’s Lodge. In order to formalise its position within the site, a raft is created to encircle the existing structure whilst offering accessible circulation routes to the north and terraces to the east and west. Within the ground floor, a subtle recalibration of spaces takes prompts from the existing diagram, but offers a programme which is supportive towards the wider site (the map & boot room). At the lower ground level, the external wall to the north is removed offering a more expansive plan which may open out to the facing woodland. New elements of external facade are constructed from a warm grey precast concrete as compliment to the tones of the existing sandstone and a scallop shell motif, set into the formwork, is adopted from the the cast iron work designed by David Bryce found at the Mausoleum.