Architecture student Paul Nelson has designs on a prestigious international award for his project work.
The 24-year-old of Moorhey Crescent, Bamber Bridge, is one of less than 100 students worldwide nominated for this year’s silver medal by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).
First awarded in 1836 as the RIBA Silver Medal for an architectural essay, it is RIBA’s oldest award, and aims to recognise and promote design work.
Paul, who is his sixth year of a degree course at the University of Lincoln, has based his final year project around the idea of a ‘cabinet of curiosities’ in the ruins of an Oxfordshire manor house with peepholes and a sense of the ‘observer being observed’.
Paul said: “I’ve based the design around the film Robinson in Ruins.
“It is directed by Blackpool-born Patrick Keiller, who was originally an architect, and I picked up the manor house site from that film.
“I take the narrative from where the film ends, and there are quite a few themes running along through it.”
Paul added: “In the sixth year you can choose yourself what you want to work on, so there’s always a good mix of ideas.
“You are working on your own, but I have had some good support from tutors too.”
Paul has long had an interest in restoring old buildings, and was involved in the ill-fated recent campaign to save Wesley Street Mill in Bamber Bridge from demolition, while also completing his studies.
His course has involved three years as an undergraduate, a year out in practice, and a further two years completing a masters.
He is now back in the North West “for the foreseeable future” and has taken on a job with Chorley practice Gilling Dod, though still faces another exam after a year in industry.
Paul was nominated by his university lecturers and judging for the competition takes place on October 24, with an award ceremony in December.
He added: “It’s fantastic to be nominated for the award, it’s the best thing to be nominated for at the end of six years.
“I wasn’t expecting it at all.”