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Glasgow Harbour Tunnel and the Rotundas
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Roll and chips
Roll and chips

Joined: 16 May 2012
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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 8:19 am    Post subject:  Reply with quote Report this post to Mods

I would love to see some dome of discovery stuff! I think it was 1990, for the year of city of culture.

There was another exhibition for kids at that time in the maclellan galleries on sauchiehall st, can anyone remember that or what it was called?
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Location: Utopia Planitia

PostPosted: Thu Nov 28, 2013 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Report this post to Mods

Historic Glasgow South Rotunda to host arts events (© BBC)

An unused historic structure which was part of Glasgow's original Clyde tunnel is to see new
life as an arts venue.

The South Rotunda, linked to its north bank twin at Finnieston, formed the Harbour Tunnel, which
opened in 1895. After the tunnel closed in 1980, the North Rotunda saw use as a casino and a
restaurant. Its south twin has remained unused apart from a brief spell during the 1988 Glasgow
Garden Festival.

Next year, it will host a "pop-up" arts festival along with the NTS. The Tin Forest puppet show, which
will take place in July 2014, is being staged by performers from the Scottish Youth Theatre under a
wider programme run by the National Theatre for Scotland.

It has been billed as the finalé of an eight-month project across Glasgow and the Commonwealth,
and part of the Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme. All performances at the South Rotunda will run
during the Commonwealth Games.

The festival will explore the city's industrial heritage and 21st century future and feature "a rich
programme of performance and visual art".

James H
The blinding obvious is what you showed to me.....
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Andy North Croy
Buttered roll
Buttered roll

Joined: 04 Dec 2013
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 04, 2013 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Report this post to Mods

Very similar tunnel still in use is under the River Elbe in Hamburg.
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 10, 2014 7:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Report this post to Mods

Tin Forest brings Glasgow Rotunda back to life (© Evening Times)

Sitting upstairs under the huge roof of the South Rotunda, Graham McLaren looks around him and
says: "It was literally just a fantasy, we didn't genuinely think we would get access to all this."

Built in the late 18th century and once used to give pedestrians, horses and carts access to the first
Clyde Tunnel, the building has lain empty since 1980, when the tunnel closed. The brick winding house
had a brief, fresh lease of life during the 1988 Glasgow Garden Festival and then again in 1990 as the
home of the Dome of Discovery, during Glasgow's International Year of Culture in 1990. Now, for two
weeks, it will be brought back to life again with theatre, music and visual arts as National Theatre of
Scotland uses the venue to stage The Tin Forest Festival.

NTS associate director Graham reimagining of children's story The Tin Forest, by Helen Ward and Wayne
Anderson, is a wonderful celebration of Glasgow's industrial past and its creative future. "Like most
people I've driven past the South Rotunda and thought, I'd love to do something with that. To get the
opportunity is rare and I feel really privileged," he says. "It was a challenge to get the building and it's
a testament to the people at National Theatre of Scotland, we have a brilliant producing team and
administrative team that negotiated and cajoled and persuaded and blackmailed probably and flirted
certainly to get us in here. We do our festival and then it will almost immediately be turned into offices,
so this is the last opportunity people are ever going to have to engage with the building."

When Graham, who is also the show's set and costume designer, started work on the project a year ago
the original idea was to stage it somewhere like Glasgow Green. When practicalities, especially when the
Scottish summer weather were considered, the South Rotunda seemed the perfect option. His previous
work with NTS has included In Time O' Strife, A Dolls House, A Christmas Carol and Men Should Weep,
and he has also staged shows in London's West End, ancient Greek amphitheatres, national theatres and
at festival around the world. The Tin Forest is a brilliant story about regeneration, of where you live. It's
the story of an old man who lives next to nowhere, he's close to forgotten and decides to take matters into
his own hands and build himself a forest made out of the detritus in which he lives. And out of that grows
a real forest, and then he lives in the kind of place everyone wants to live. You could see the show as an
analogy and a metaphor for Glasgow and the city's regeneration," says Graham. "It also touches on the
very real political and social debate that's going on now about the referendum." He says it was crucial that
a team, predominantly of Glaswegians, created the work. "This is our story," he adds.

The Tin Forest is at the heart of the Commonwealth Games Cultural Festival, an immersive puppet theatre
journey that takes 10 people at a time through a labyrinth of rooms and landscapes built on the ground
floor of the rotunda. Like an elaborate film set, the attention to detail is perfect and the show promises to
be a truly magical experience. "I hope people are surprised and delighted and reminded of old Glasgow
and those old guys, like your grandfather, who had a shed full of dark arts: that whole generation of guys
who were really skilled and diligent and hardworking. In some ways we pay a bit of a homage to them,"
says Graham passionately. "It's a little bit of Glasgow's history in one of the city's historical buildings. It's
incredible that in the 1970s and 1980s, when all those industries were systematically closed down, no-one
took to the streets. Those guys went quietly home to their sheds. In a way they never really got any celebration
and or recognition, that's one of things I hope this project does."

Community groups around the city are already familiar with The Tin Forest, with many involved in creating
theatre events in Govan, Springburn, the East End and Southwest last month. Govan-born actor Iain Robertson
went back to his roots to work with youngsters to give classes in the Pearce Institute, offering acting, voice
and communication skills with a focus on building young people's confidence. It also gave them the change
to learn more about their local areas, where the ship, planes and locomotives that powered the world were

"There are generations of people who don't realise these things about the place where they live and the people
who made the Glasgow we now know, like Mary Barbour and the rent strikes, or John McLean or Jimmy Reid,"
says Graham. "These are all landmarks, without which, for better or worse, we would not be in the place we
are now. It's important to weave all of that into an experience and a story that allows us a wee bit, just a moment,
in the heart of when the world is coming to watch us. We have the Hydro over there, the Clyde and this little
jewel, the Rotunda, the show will be a wee moment for people just to remember where we've come from."

For information and tickets, visit www.thetinforest.com
  • Opening Night on July 22 with Gary Lewis, Paul Riley and Barbara Rafferty in a concert in the South Rotunda courtyard.
  • The Tin Forest Show, an immersive puppet theatre journey, daily from July 24 to August 3.
  • Dear Glasgow, a public participatory event with a live audience, on July 31.
  • International Theatre Festival, featuring 100 people from 10 youth theatre companies across the Commonwealth, from July 24-28.
  • July 21-23. International Performing Company directed by Scottish Youth Theatre with 90 young Commonwealth people
    making street theatre at locations across the city.

James H
The blinding obvious is what you showed to me.....
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2017 3:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Report this post to Mods

South Rotunda brought back from ruin as restoration is complete (© Evening Times)

For years, Glaswegians used the Rotunda tunnels to make their way from one side of the Clyde to the other.

More recently, however, parts of this industrial thoroughfare have fallen in to bad disrepair with the South Rotunda in
much worse condition than its twin on the north side of the river. But now a major architectural upgrade has been finished
on the building, which means it will be ready for use this month. Architect Colin Anderson, who led the refurbishment, said
the new work had kept the integrity of the building with a "long, distinguished and unique industrial history".

Originally designed by engineers Simpson and Wilson, both the North and South Rotundas were built between 1890 and
1896 to cover lift shafts to tunnels under the River Clyde. The Glasgow Harbour Tunnel, as it was officially named, was
opened in 1895 and housed three tunnels, each around five metres in diameter. One was for pedestrians, while the remaining
two carried carts and horse-drawn vehicles. Later cars were also able to use these tunnels.

They connected two areas, the North Rotunda near the SECC, and the South Rotunda which sits close to the STV studios
at Pacific Quay. Both of these round buildings covered 24 meter deep shafts containing hydraulic lifts and stairs to take
users to and from the tunnels.

During the Second World War, the lift metalwork was removed for the war effort, and both tunnels remained closed in 1943
due to safety fears as there were frequent leaks from the river above. The pedestrian tunnel was reopened in 1947 and
remained in use until April 1980 and was later sealed and a large water main installed by Scottish Water in 1987. That tunnel
is still there (though closed to the public) but the two others were filled in in 1986.

The South Rotunda has been used on various occasions, including the Glasgow Garden Festival in 1988 and a pop-up theatre
in 2014. However, unlike the North Rotunda, which has been used as a casino, bar and restaurant hub, it has for the most
part lain empty and fallen in bad shape. The Grade B listed building was even put on the "at risk" register, but now after a
two year project it has been restored to its former splendour.

Mr Anderson, of GD Lodge Architects, said the main challenge was converting the shelter to a habitable space. He said: "It was
never a building, it was an enclosure, so it was really an empty void when we first started." Taking place over three stages,
the first — the conservation stage — worked on the conditions on the outside of the building. The second structural stage saw
to the metalwork, floors and made sure it was water-tight, while the final fit-out stage made it fit for purpose for new owners,
marine engineering firm Malin Group.

The build included the addition of five new windows, which Mr Anderson says are appropriate to the structure, and five floors
including two levels within the old dome. Mr Anderson says this the defining feature of the new building, which will include a
gallery area on the highest floor. He said: "The gallery at the dome is one of the most striking parts, as it brings you face-to-face
with all the wrought iron on the upper level. Here the project as a concept has surpassed our expectations as it's really bringing
you close to the industrial history which hasn't been seen before."

He added: "We're pulling it back from the brink, it wouldn't have lasted much longer without this work."

James H
The blinding obvious is what you showed to me.....
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Buttered roll
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Report this post to Mods

Hi. I'm new to the site and I love it. I was born in Wier street, grew up there and in Watt street. These pics of the old tunnel bring back some brilliant memories. We used to use the tunnel as a playground. Looking forward to exploring this site in great detail.  

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