Challenges and blessings of being a Bath Rugby fan on the Basil Spence project

Posted in: Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering, Student projects, Undergraduate

Author: Jack Hodkinson -

I believe it was our approach to the project that allowed us to build such momentum and enthusiasm within our team. We began by investigating the landscape proposal, co-creating a design for the site that we were all confident in. The landscape formed an anchor in our design, which we were then able to build on. This meant that when we pursued parts of the project individually, we were united by a singular vision for the site.

Rugby fan

I am incredibly passionate about rugby, and this has proved to be both a challenge and a blessing for this project. It enabled me to approach the project with enthusiasm, creating momentum from the offset. Having spent a lot of time in various rugby stadiums, I was able to challenge my perceptions of what constitutes a great stadium from the user perspective. It was important for me to work through a lot of my preconceptions about what a good stadium should be like. Being so familiar with stadiums meant I had to consciously disrupt my thinking to create bolder designs. However, this project certainly made my Bath season ticket a more justifiable expense!

Working with engineers

It was great to work with both engineers and architects on this project. We all approached the project differently, each contributing different specialisms and knowledge sets. We worked well together, and were able to challenge each other to critique our assumptions and add greater depth to our ideas. It was brilliant to work with engineers, and their enthusiasm about transforming our architectural ideas into an exciting (and achievable) scheme was infectious. Together we were able to work collaboratively to ensure a high-quality design, where every member contributed to the overarching project narrative. The success of this collaboration was reflected in our crit feedback, where they said that all members spoke fluently in regard to both the structural and architectural aspects of the scheme.

To sum up

The reputation of the Basil Spence project was initially intimidating, as this is the project we have been working towards since we began our time at Bath. It was fantastic to see how much we have developed since we started our degrees, and I am truly proud of the project we created.

Posted in: Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering, Student projects, Undergraduate

See the design for a new south stand at Bath Recreation Ground


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