Julius Gottlieb Gallery and Boathouse at former Carmel College


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
Former Carmel College, Mongewell Park, Wallingford, OX10 8BU


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Statutory Address:
Former Carmel College, Mongewell Park, Wallingford, OX10 8BU

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

South Oxfordshire (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:
SU 60814 87754


This list entry was subject to a Minor Amendment on 08/05/2018

SU 68 SW 472/2/10009

CROWMARSH MONGEWELL PARK Julius Gottlieb Gallery and Boathouse at former Carmel College

(Formerly listed as Julius Gottlieb Gallery and Boathouse at Carmel College)

GV II* Exhibition gallery and boathouse. Designed 1968, built 1969-70 by Sir Basil Spence, Bonnington and Collins, design architect John Urwin Spence. Plinth of curving brick walls contains boathouse, with the gallery a reinforced concrete pyramid 12.2 metres square, rising to a height of 14 metres set on top. Brick paviours to roof of boathouse. The pyramid of reinforced concrete `gunite' with trowelled finish. Two pairs of double doors to boathouse. The pyramid is pierced with triangular openings, their soffits painted in primary colours, fitted with toughened plate clerestory glazing in metal frames. Glazing at side entrance with triangular lights, and square panes fitted in board-marked triangular surround filled with coloured glass and monographed `J G'. Projecting concrete gargoyles dispel rainwater into brick pools below, part of the composition.

INTERIOR: the gallery is lined with board-marked concrete, which incorporates light brackets. The room is entered down steps, which give on to a raised platform area for three-dimensional work, surrounded by fixed concrete benches incorporated into the building. The interior of the boathouse understood to be simple, and lit by a single triangular rooflight.

The building was erected as part of Carmel College, a Jewish boarding school founded in 1948 by Rabbi Dr Kopul Rosen and established at Mongewell in 1953, and closed in 1997. It is a late addition to the scheme of new buildings, most of them built in the early 1960s to the designs of Thomas Hancock, who prepared a master plan in 1960. Only the gallery and boathouse building is of special interest. It was presented to Carmel College by one of its governors, Lieutenant Commander E J Gottlieb, as a memorial to his father Julius Gottlieb, a designer in wood and patron of the Arts. The pyramidal form was chosen as appropriate to a monument, with the boathouse deliberately kept in a subordinate position. It was originally intended for the exhibition of industrial and engineering design as well as for Arts and Crafts. It is perhaps the most dramatic example of the tough, geometrical forms increasingly preferred by Sir Basil Spence as his work evolved and became more monumental in the 1960s. The small scale of this building made it perfect for the synthesis of these ideas. The building is proto-post modern for its classical geometry.

(Sources: Sir Basil Spence, Bonnington and Collins, practice brochure. nd. c.1969)

Listing NGR: SU6081487754


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Pevsner, N, Sherwood, J, The Buildings of England: Oxfordshire, (1974)
'Concrete Quarterly' in October/December, (1970), 2-4


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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Date: 04 Feb 2006
Reference: IOE01/13972/04
Rights: Copyright IoE Dale Venn. Source Historic England Archive
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