The geometric building in Galashiels houses the 143m-long tapestry, one of the world’s largest community arts projects
Glasgow-based Page\Park Architects has completed the Great Tapestry of Scotland gallery, in the town of Galashiels in the Scottish Borders. The building was designed to house the Great Tapestry of Scotland – one of the world’s largest community arts projects, hand stitched by 1,000 people from across Scotland in 2012-2013 to depict the country’s history stretching back 12,000 years.
Page\Park’s architectural vision was to create a distinctive building that responds to physical and historical context, with a dramatic zigzag-like pitched roofline inspired by the surrounding roofscape of towers, dormers, gables and pitched roofs in Galashiels, a booming textile town of the 19th century.
The building contains a special room for the tapestry on the first floor – a dramatic space defined by folding walls and ceiling which reflect the roofline above. The gallery is precisely shaped to house the 143m-long tapestry, which wraps around a series of radial display walls to form a continuous linear display. At the four corners of the gallery are tall windows offering views out to the hills that surround Galashiels. The walls of the gallery are clad with fabric woven on the Isle of Bute and finished locally.
The ground floor of the building, meanwhile, houses a temporary gallery space, reception, shop, cafe, and education space. The Great Tapestry of Scotland Gallery acts as an anchor for the regeneration of Galashiels’ town centre, supported by a new railway line connecting it with Edinburgh.
Photography by Keith Hunter
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