Ugly College London and Castle Mildly Unsightly

UCL and Oxford Halls shortlisted for Carbuncle Cup awarded to the country’s worst building

UCL’s newest Halls, the aptly-named New Hall, and Oxford’s Castle Mill accommodation complex have been shortlisted for the less-than-prestigious Carbuncle Cup, awarded for the UK’s ugliest building completed in the last 12 months.

Like a sore thumb ... New Hall's false front

Like a sore thumb … New Hall’s false front

Sporting a repulsive false front, the Caledonian Road eyesore houses 350 modern bed spaces, and pictures of its exterior are- somewhat unsurprisingly- lacking from virtual tours of the complex.

bland ... New Hall's interior

Inoffensive … New Hall’s interior is less risqué than its front

Described by one local resident as “over-sized sheds”, the Castle Mill student housing development in Oxford was also nominated. Not quite what one expects to be living in whilst at the UK’s oldest uni, the development- for graduate students living as couples or families- was described as “unimaginative” and “impoverished in design” by Building Design, the magazine that runs the annual award.

The Campaign to Protect Rural England agreed, and were so utterly outraged at the really-not-that-bad accommodation complex for completely ruining all of Oxfordshire that they started a justgiving page and legal fund to “remedy this outrage”, tear down the “aesthetic abomination”, and save the local area and wildlife (apart from the foxes) from the University and City Planners.

They will be continuing their fight at the High Court in October whilst continuing to campaign against windmills, the Guardian and people who drive Landrovers without owning a farm.


Not an actual castle … Castle Mill made architects and countryside people take to their keyboards in anger for ruining Oxfordshire

This isn’t the first time that a University building has been nominated for the award. University College Hospital- one of UCL’s teaching hospitals- was in the final 10 for the inaugural award in 2006, and Scotland’s Queen Margaret University in all of its vulgarity was shortlisted 2009 for looking like a matchbox precariously balanced on two toothpicks next to a puddle.

University College Hideous ... UCH was nominated in 2006

University College Hideous … UCH was nominated in 2006

Qheen Margarent Unsightly- QMU in its entirety was nominated

Queen Margaret Unsightly … QMU in its entirety made the final in 2009

Non-university buildings nominated include the repugnant Redcar Beacon (looks like a lipstick applicator), and a sports complex in Colwyn (looks like a skip on a raft loosely tethered to the docks).

Whilst all four are very… modern in their design, architectural beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I guess?

The ‘winner’ will be announced on August 30th