THE BLOCK MILLS, PORTSMOUTH NAVAL DOCKYARD, HAMPSHIRE - AN ANALYSIS OF THE BUILDING

Author(s): Peter Guillery

This report is partial and provisional; it is not intended that it should be read in isolation. It is partial because it is an adjunct to other reports, a general historical account, and accounts of the machinery that gave the Portsmouth Block Mills their great renown. It is provisional firstly because any separate analysis of building fabric in a situation where there is rich historical documentation (as there is for the Block Mills) can be nothing else, pending the integration of documentary with physical evidence. While this report does incorporate understandings based on available documentation, including some that have been newly researched, there is still more to be done in reconciling the building with the documentary evidence. This report is also provisional because the circumstances of its making have imposed limitations. Closer investigation than has been possible is needed to draw out and refine understandings of certain aspects of the building's history. This is particularly so with regard to what might be surmised from the building about the history of its power transmission and the placement of machines. The floors need careful recording, especially in relation to the heads of the vaults below, ideally to generate a three-dimensional drawn reconstruction.. Closer analysis would also be likely to be rewarding with regard to the former steam-engine houses in the south range of the building; if intervention to reveal hidden surfaces becomes possible, much might be learned.

Report Number:
123/2003
Series:
Other
Pages:
65
Keywords:
Building Recording

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