ZSL Heritage: The Penguin Pool

ZSL London

The Penguin Pool, ZSL London © David Gill

ZSL London contains a number of listed heritage sites. One of the most memorable is the Penguin Pool, designed by architect Berthold Lubetkin. This was the first project for engineer Ove Arup and dates to 1935. The pool is a Grade I listed building.

The Penguins were moved to a new location in 2004.

For ‘Penguin Pool’ events from Arup.

The Athenian Akropolis


The Athenian Akropolis © David Gill

The Athenian Akropolis was listed as a World Heritage site in 1987. The skyline is dominated by the Parthenon constructed during the 440s and 430 BC (and originally containing the chryselephantine statue of Athena Parthenos created by the sculptor Pheidias).

Erechtheion, Athens

The Erechtheion © David Gill

To the north of the Parthenon lies the complex of religious sites contained within the Erechtheion. This contains the caryatid porch that overlaps with the remains of the late 6th century BC temple of Athena.

Propylaia Athens

Propylaia © David Gill

The western entrance to the Akropolis is dominated by the Propylaia constructed towards the end of the Parthenon building project and halted by the outbreak of the Peloponnesian War. This was flanked on the south side by the temple of Athena Nike constructed in the 420s BC, and on the north by the Pinakotheke.

Piercebridge Roman Bridge


Piercebridge Roman Bridge © David Gill

The Roman road, Dere Street, from York (Eboracum) to Corbridge crossed the river Tees at Piercebridge. Remains of the Roman bridge are in the care of English Heritage (full details here including plan and bibliography). This bridge appears to date to the early 3rd century AD.

A short entry on on the bridge (with reconstruction) appears in the English Heritage guidebook to Aldborough Roman Town. 

Cultural heritage in Greece during the present economic crisis


The Stadion at Olympia © David Gill

Suffolk Business School Research Seminar

Professor David Gill

Date: 9 December 2015, 4.00-5.30 pm


Greece has faced serious economic and social challenges during the present economic crisis. Heritage sites are seen as a major asset in the tourism strategy for Greece to generate income from outside the country. There are 15 World Heritage sites in Attica (the Athenian Akropolis), central Greece (Delphi), the Peloponnese (Bassae, Epidauros, Mycenae and Tiryns, Mystras, Olympia), Macedonia (Vergina, Thessalonika), and the islands (Delos, Rhodes, Chios, Corfu, Samos, Patmos). The paper will analyse data from the Hellenic Statistical Service.

In 2014 more than 14 million visits were made to heritage sites and museums in Greece. Back in 2008 the same figures showed that only 8 million visits were made. There are clearly heritage ‘hot-spots’ with Athens, Knossos, Rhodes and Olympia leading the way. The figures suggest that visitors tend to enjoy visiting sites rather than museums, though at Delphi nearly two-thirds of visitors also make their way to the museum to see the finds from the excavations. In 2014 heritage sites and museums generated more than 54 million Euros in ticket sales alone.

However there are some sites and museums, especially on more remote islands or in the mountains of the Peloponnese, where visitor numbers are extremely low. There are suggestions from northern European and North American arts commentators that Greece should realise its assets by selling ‘duplicate’ objects from its extensive holdings.

Further details


Temple of Zeus at Olympia © David Gill

Wroxeter Roman City


Wroxeter Roman Baths © David Gill

The remains of the Roman city of Viroconium can be found at Wroxeter in Shropshire. It contains one of the largest Roman architectural fragments in Britain, part of the urban baths. The site was excavated by J.P. Bushe-Fox 1912-14, then in 1936 and 1937 by Kathleen Kenyon, and from 1955 by teams from Birmingham University under Graham Webster, and from 1966 Philip Barker. The remains of the bath-house came under state guardianship in 1948, and more of the city in 1972 (through purchase).


1965 (4th impression 1970)

The first guidebook for the site (The Baths at Wroxeter Roman City) was published in 1965 by Graham Webster, with a section on the site museum by G.C. Dunning. There are two foldout plans: one of the baths complex, and the other of the city.


1978 (3rd edition)

A second edition of the guidebook appeared in 1973, and a third edition in 1978. The third edition was by the two recent excavators Graham Webster and Philip Barker. On the title page it is given as Viroconium, Wroxeter Roman City. Inside the cover is an updated plan of the baths, and another of the city. The guide includes a reconstruction by Alan Sorrell. The specific section on the museum was dropped.


1991 (repr. 1993)

English Heritage produced a fully illustrated guidebook with numerous reconstructions in 1991. The authors were again Webster and Baker. It includes detailed aerial photographs and a more substantial plan of the entire city.


1999 (repr. 2007)

A new colour guidebook by Roger White appeared in 1999. This includes a section on the church of St Andrew and the medieval village, and a brief mention of the site museum. There is also a quotation from Wilfred Owen’s 1913 poem ‘Uriconium’. There are several reconstructions, and a geophysical plan of the city is included.


Dunchraigaig Cairn

Dunchraigaig Cairn

Dunchraigaig Cairn © David Gill

Dunchraigaig Cairn lies within the prehistoric landscape of Kilmartin. It is situated on what appears to be a raised beach overlooking the main part of the glen. It contained at least three burial locations.

The cairn is now under the guardianship of Historic Scotland.


Dunchraigaig Car Park © David Gill

Greek Pottery at Nostell Priory

Nostell Priory

Nostell Priory, Yorkshire © David Gill

My paper on the Attic black-glossed bolsal now in the Great North Museum in Newcastle upon Tyne but once in the collection at Nostell Priory in Yorkshire is now available. The house is now owned by the National Trust.

Gill, D. W. J. 2015. “The Nostell Priory bolsal.” In On the fascination of objects: Greek and Etruscan art in the Shefton Collection, edited by J. Boardman, A. Parkin, and S. Waite: 95-106. Oxford: Oxbow.

Edited volume