of the Sir Patrick Geddes Memorial Trust Awards Scheme for 2012
On 4 September
2012, as part of the Scottish Government's Scottish Awards for Quality
in Planning, Mr Colin Haylock, President of the RTPI UK, presented
certificates to winners of awards in the Sir Patrick Geddes student
were made this year and Trustees attending the awards' ceremony
were delighted to meet and congratulate those students who were
able to attend the ceremony held for the first time in Glasgow at
1 award went to Catriona Macdonald of the School of Architecture
at the University of Strathclyde. Her dissertation entitled "Aig
An Airigh:People and Place" recorded beautifully the history
and present practice of the summer Shieling in Lewis. In so doing
it illustrated the close interaction between man and his environment
and how it was changing over time. The judges liked the subject,
its presentation and the way Catriona captured the importance of
the shieling as part of the cultural history of the Outer Hebrides
which ought to be conserved in a variety of ways.
2a the judges awarded the prize to Vanessa Jones of the Department
of Geography, School of Geosciences, at the University of Edinburgh
for her dissertation entitled "One Place, Many Stories"
a neighbourhood's response to the Calthorpe Project. It considered
people's engagement with a community garden project in London's
King's Cross and how they appropriated and used it in a multiplicity
of ways. It also showed how the garden's role was contested and
reconstructed by its users reflecting an evolving and complex social
interaction between different groups. The judges considered it an
insightful study of an urban space seeking to accommodate diverse
2b Scott Abercrombie of the School of Architecture, at the University
of Strathclyde is the first student to achieve an award two years
in a row. His M.Arch in Advanced Architectural Design with the intriguing
title "Macro algae and the micro community:utilising Scotland's
natural resources to generate sustainable economies" was an
ambitious project that investigated the history of the seaweed industry
in Scotland and how it might be revived. Recognising the potential
of algae and ways in which it might now be developed, he analysed
the opportunities that could be pursued in Scotland and then presented
a series of detailed proposals in selected locations on the west
coast where the industry might be established. The judges were impressed
with the comprehensive nature of this work and welcomed the willingness
to re-explore Scotland's natural resources in the light of potential
new uses for seaweed in modern industry linked in scale to the communities
on the west coast of Scotland.
of the School of the Built Environment, Heriot-Watt University was
awarded the Category 3 prize for the best first year student. The
examples of work submitted proposed a sustainable building that
would provide an exhibition space with scope for interactive learningand
advice on ways to promote sustainable building and living. In the
second piece of work on a design brief for an eco-community, the
judges felt that Emma had demonstrated a good grasp of the many
ways in which planning could help deliver sustainability and the
need for detailed and inter-related examination of many issues in
securing sustainable development.
are pleased with the continuing level of interest in their awards'
scheme and are most grateful to those universities that submitted
entries this year. The work received varied from the regional to
the local scale and was of a particularly high standard. It is most
gratifying to note that many of them resonate well with Patrick
Geddes thinking and approach.
thanks go to the Scottish Government yet again for their continuing
kind support in letting us join their national awards' ceremony.
each student's work is set out below.
An Airigh: People and Place
aims to chronicle the tradition of annual migration to the moors;
research the reasons for the decline in the practice of transhumance
in the area and investigate what the shieling villages of Cuidhsiadar
and Filiscleitir mean to people now.
moorland villages of Cuidhsiadar and Filiscleitir remain as crumbling
monuments to the lives of generations past. Using only the materials
they could scavenge from the surrounding area and driftwood collected
from the nearby shore the local people used their skills passed
down from their forefathers, to construct these dwellings to provide
shelter for their annual exodus to the moors to graze their cattle
and make butter and cheese for the coming long, harsh winter.
of annual migration to the shielings was practised throughout the
Outer Hebrides until the Second World War (Miller 1967). From "Glanadh
a' Bhaile" or "Clearing the village", in early May
when women and children would direct their animals across the moors
to their summertime abode, until "Oidhche na hlomraich",
or "Night of the Flitting" in September, when they could
pack their belongings once more and head back to their crofts on
the west coast, the entire three months of summer were spent on
the moor. But on the isle of Lewis, despite the necessity of transhumance
having been long negated, there remain a stalwart few who still
keep the tradition alive by using these humble dwellings as weekend
escapes or bases for peat cutting (Miller).
to be a sense of romanticism surrounding the shielings amongst the
current generation. This is surprising considering the levels of
social and economic deprivation in the area until the mid twentieth
century (Campbell 2011). Despite this hardship, many have fond memories
and a sense of nostalgia as they recall the summers spent out on
the moorlands. The shielings themselves are now a little known part
of the history and culture of the north of Lewis. But, there are
a few who are attempting to record and illustrate the shielings
in order to preserve better both the physical characteristics and
essence of the buildings.
Place, many Stories : A Neighbourhood's response to the Calthorpe
examines peoples' engagements with a place - the Calthorpe Project,
a community garden in London's King's Cross. It explores how a diverse
public appropriate and use the garden in different ways, and identifies
how the garden comes to be a representational space for different
social groups. Research involved volunteering at the Project for
a number of months and using the method of participant observation
to fully capture the goings-on in the garden and identify a relationship
between the garden's physical design and users' social practices.
Moreover, the stylistic method of ethnofiction was used to embed
the reader in the rich context of the garden.
therefore demonstrates how one site can reflect a multiplicity of
place, whereby the garden's value as a collective and communal claim
to urban space, is contested and reconstructed by its various users.
As such, this paper also investigates how notions of "community"
and "public space" are reproduced and/or resisted in this
setting, as part of the project's complex social structure. This
study subsequently focuses on how popularised understandings of
"public space", "community"and "community
gardens" match the reality of the Calthorpe Project and how
the garden operates as a place for living with difference.
Algae and the Micro Community : Utilising Scotland's natural resources
to generate sustainable rural communities.
This has been
undertaken in response to the industrial decline of the seaweed
utilisation in Scotland in order to develop a methodology through
which this sector can be re-ignited and stabilised. The establishment
of a commercial biofuel sector answers Scotland's current requirement
for a sustainable transport fuel to complement its flourishing renewables
sector, whilst responding to pre-existing global concerns over the
environmental and social impacts of first-generated biofuels and
the expansion of industrial agriculture.
of the co-products resulting from the biofuel production process
will also be analysed with particular attention being given to their
ability t reduce Scotland's dependence on diminishing hydrocarbon
fuel and its derivatives.
precedents will unveil the issues that have caused the downfall
of three major algae industries that have preceded the impending
biofuel era. Through the exposure of these flaws policies will be
put in place to assuage fears of the industry suffering a short
of contemporary algal research and its considerable success provides
the impetus for moving forward with this project and offers an insight
into the potential mass markets of the future.
concludes that a number of investigations are required to further
establish the commercial and environmental possibilities of establishing
such a venture and recommends design proposals for three building
typologies be investigated alongside Crown Estate surveys of the
existing resource and its annual sustainable yield and field testing
of mariculture to develop an economic cultivation method.
The first example
of work was part of an integrative project which all professional
disciplines in the School of the Built Environment are required
to take. It comprised a piece of group work which examined a sustainable
building that would provide exhibitions and interactive learning
methods to promote sustainable building and living techniques (REED)
The second piece of work, prepared in conjunction with a Construction
Management student, was a comprehensive design brief for an eco-community.