Wednesday, 1 February 2012

High Point

High Point or the former Yorkshire Building Society HQ if you will, is probably Bradford's best example of brutalist architecture.  A look at these urban exploration photos inspired the blog post.

I think Owen Hatherley sums up this piece of architecture well: 
"High Point is also ritually loathed by right-thinking Bradfordians, and is also home to a local bank, the somewhat less notorious Yorkshire Building Society. It's also utterly freakish, the severed head of some Japanese giant robot clad in a West Yorkshire stone-based concrete aggregate, glaring out at the city through blood-red windows, the strangest urban artefact in a city which does not lack for architectural interest. The work of Brunton seems almost too appropriate for the combination of wild technological daring, Cold War paranoia, shabby corruption and crushed dreams that defined the Wilson era."


John Brunton and Partners designed much of Bradford's brutalist buildings such as Provincial House (now gone) and Arndale House on Market Street, as well as Bingley's former Bradford & Bingley headquarters.  High Point has been described by many as Soviet looking and with its position at one of the highest points (hence the name) looks like activities are in the building to keep us all under control.  In reality, it's just an empty office building.  The building is probably too unattractive for the modern office market, an alnteriative use would be good for the building to act as a landmark that can help define the city but in reality the building is probably too big and cumbersome for this.

High Point / Yorkshire Building Society - Bradford

No comments:

Post a Comment