Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Wednesday 3rd Feb 2010.
Capital Studios. Wandsworth Plain, London SW18:

Property developer Minerva currently have a planning application at appeal stage for a large scale mixed use redevelopment of Wandsworth town centre involving the site of the old Youngs Brewery, a chunk of Buckholt Road and the land currently occupied by Capitol Television Studios. Collectively the scheme seems to be known as the Ram Brewery Development.

While bits of the brewery are to be saved and incorporated into the new plan, the flinty, brutish Capitol Studios is to be demolished which is, to an extent, a shame as parts of it have real character but, as a whole, the building does seem a bit of a mess... with an uncertain relationship to it's site and a pretty unresolved relationship between it's constituent parts (ie between the small scale entrance block and the large masses of the sound studios) and so I for one won't be mourning it unreservedly, should the wrecking ball swing...

Hard almost irridescent blue/red/black engineering bricks combine with rough(ish) concrete details and nicely modelled window reveals. And hey, isn't that another blue gate? Yes it is. So more proof that light blue is the only choice for your miscellaneous ironwork if you don't want to get laughed at by your brutalist architect friends.

Don't know how old the building is - would guess about 35yrs. If so this timber oriel window is bearing up well.

All the shots above are of the 'good' bit of the building, meaning the entrance/ reception block but if you wander round the site in search of more of the same...

....things get a little bit less convincing.

And there are no other elevations (the opposite side of the building to that shown in the image above is completely blocked from view by other buildings)...apart from the one below which could be a scene straight out of Jarvis Cocker's grimy northern imagination.

Totally unrelated - other than being nearby to the Capital Studios site - a small plot which might otherwise have been used for fly-tipping has been made over with brick paving in a pleasing way to create a worthwhile bit of public space.