In late 2016 the Newport Street Gallery won the prestigious RIBA Stirling Prize for the UK’s best new building.
Newport Street Gallery in Vauxhall, famous for it’s Damien Hirst Exhibition, involved the conversion of a terrace of listed industrial buildings, formerly used as workshops for theatre carpentry and scenery painting. Forming the whole length of the street, the gallery, designed by the Caruso St John Architects team, comprises three listed Victorian buildings flanked at either end by new builds. The floors within the buildings are continuous allowing them to be used flexibly to accommodate large and smaller exhibitions.
Lime Green’s lime mortars, produced in Shropshire, were used for the spiral staircase and external brickwork. The judges praised the approach to conservation on the project, marrying the host older terraces and the new buildings and called the staircases, for which Lime Green’s Natural Lime Mortar was used, “outrageously virtuosic”. They also praised the “strong sense of traditional craftsmanship using contemporary technologies,” something the Lime Green team are also passionate about. The same mortar was also used for building and pointing, in different colours outside (to match existing mortar) and inside (to match the bricks in the staircase).
Simon Ayres said: “It’s a bold and confident project and we were delighted that our lime mortars are a permanent part of this fantastic gallery. We’re really pleased that the team behind the design have rightly been recognised by the Royal Institute of British Architects for this outstanding public building.”
Nigel Wright from The Lime Centre, who collaborated with Lime Green on the project, said: “The architects had a clear idea of the colour and texture required for the mortar to the existing brickwork and the brickwork to the new staircases. Large scale trials with various pre-blended colours and sand grades were carried out by The Lime Centre and the brick contractors to ensure the required colour was achieved and to ensure the joints were finished to achieve the required texture and profile.”
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