New Futures for Birmingham`s Historic Buildings

Friday Photo: Muirhead Tower

Posted December 16th, 2016 by Ellie Gill with 1 Comment


Today’s Friday photo is of the relatively young Muirhead Tower on the university of Birmingham campus. Named for the first professor of philosophy at the University; John Henry Muirhead.

As with other departments at the university that were also constructed during the major expansion in the 1960s, Muirhead tower has a striking visible concrete structure. It was the second building designed by Philip Dowson of Arup Associates to be commissioned on the campus, the first being the Mining and Mineral Engineering and Physical Metallurgy department – also precast concrete, with an innovative grid layout, the building received the 1966 RIBA Architecture Award for the West Midlands.

Ongoing problems with glazing systems and deterioration of the exposed concrete structure at Muirhead Tower resulted in an extensive refurbishment completed in 2009. The building now also accommodates the Cadbury Research Library, which houses the Special Collections and Archives of the University of Birmingham.


One Response to “Friday Photo: Muirhead Tower”

  1. Keith Bracey December 17, 2016

    I was a student at the University of Birmingham from 1976 – 79 studying Commerce and Economic History there. We had many lectures in the Muirhead Tower and I recall the paternoster lifts in the building which you hopped on and off as they ran all the time in a loop……I don’t know how they would fare in today’s “Elf n Safety” environment!


Leave a comment