Seacourt Tower, Botley, Oxford, UK

Beecher & Stamford
Date Built
1965 and 1966
Botley Road
When it was built in the mid 1960s, this building was apparently a car dealership and multi-storey garage.  The Oxfordshire Pevsner Guide said that it was, "... intended to look sensational with its grid of small concrete windows, triangular at the top and bottom and its cruciform tower with four butterfly roofs..."  The brutalist multi-storey garage was four storeys high with parking on the roof and a wide ramp up to the first floor.  Apparently local residents regarded the building as inappropriately large and the spire on top led some to call it the Botley Cathedral.

The building you see in these images, taken in 2015, bears very little resemblance to the one constructed in the mid 1960s.  (You can see an image of the site at that time by following this link to the Botley & North Hinksey website).  In fact the only thing that remains from that time is the cruciform tower with a spire on top.  Even that has changed because originally the four arms were flat sided.  Photographs dating from 1988 show construction underway.  This clearly involved the demolition of the multi-storey car park and the addition of two wings, one on either side of the tower.  What appears to be a lift shaft has been added to the tower above the main entrance, and the flat sided arms of the towers four arms have been adapted with curved facades.

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