View Full Version : Archived: St.Peter's Seminary, Cardross. 19.04.09

23-04-2009, 10:10 AM
Visited here with Skin!!
Great to finally meet you =]
A beautiful day... what else to do than visit some brutal concrete architecture :D

St. Peter's Seminary is a 20th-century category-A listed building north of Cardross, Argyll and Bute, Scotland. Designed by the firm of Gillespie, Kidd and Coia, it has been described by the international architecture conservation organisation DOCOMOMO as a modern building of world significance.

Determinedly modernist, brutalist and owing a huge debt to Le Corbusier, the building is often considered one of the most important modernist buildings in Scotland."The architecture of Le Corbusier translated well into Scotland in the 1960s. Although the climate of the south of France and west of Scotland could hardly be more different, Corbu's roughcast concrete style, could, in the right hands, be seen as a natural successor or complement to traditional Scottish tower houses with their rugged forms and tough materials wrote Jonathan Glancey.

Filmmaker Murray Grigor made a documentary about the building entitled Space and Light, while Glasgow artist Toby Paterson has painted it.

The video can be viewed here: [dodgy music but gave me a great insight to the place!]

In 1980 the building closed as a seminary, subsequently becoming a drug rehabilitation centre.
However similar maintenance problems remained and it was finally vacated by the end of the 1980s. In 1995 a fire so badly damaged Kilmahew House that it had to be demolished.
The building is Category A listed by Historic Scotland and, in October 2005, was named as Scotland's greatest post-WWII building by the architecture magazine Prospect.






One of the many Student Cells [Study Bedrooms]

The college was designed to allow students to feel that their spiritual and everyday lives were closely linked by carefully integrated living, teaching and worship areas.
This sculptural building contrasts a variety of textures, including brown pebble harling and board-marked concrete, with views of the surrounding countryside from the windows.


By the time it was completed in 1966, its function was already out of date. The Second Vatican Council of the Roman Catholic Church decided that priests should be trained in communities, rather than remote seminaries. Meanwhile church attendance in Scotland was declining and the numbers entering the priesthood were dropping even faster.
As a result, the building never reached its full capacity of 100 students.
From the outset, the building was riddled with problems, including maintenance difficulties with such a unique structure and significant water ingress; the architects and owners each blamed the other for these problems.



This shows the concrete cantilevered structure containing the library at basement level, students' common room on the first floor and lecture theatre on the second floor. Most of the original glazing has been destroyed, and the timber ceiling has collapsed onto the floor below.








23-04-2009, 09:13 PM
Nice to meet you 833696 - stunning report and great pics. One thing about the history - yes the place was used in the 80's for a short while for drug rehab - I believe that this was one of its downfalls as many people whom had never knew of existence then became aware of it.

Anyways a few of my shots -