Around the time that the petrochemical industry in Teeside would reach its highest output, ICI began investing in the Wilton Centre; campus style offices set amoungst woodland and artifical lake away from the towering flames of the local refineries and maze of pipework that forms ICI Wilton.
A sloped site would be sculpted with with views across Wilton and host administrative, technical drawing offices, research and development for chemical, plastics and advanced materials research. Formed by interlocking courtyards, the staggered brick profile and intermittent eclessiastical-like stair cores are set around enclosed courtyards with views out across to the lake and folliage.
This ‘courtly giant’ of a building has a distinct collegate feel, but the plan is deeply heiracical, seperating workers with senior staff kepting staff apart in work and dining for the researchers and technicans. Since the eventual collaspe of ICI in the mid-2000s, the Wilton Centre was sold to private investors. Today it provides office and labratory space for local businesses.
Images courtesy of Building Design Partnership