The Markham Moor Papilio – A Picturesque Commentary

Karolina Szynalska


This commentary on a little-known yet remarkable structure along the A1, originally built as a roadside petrol station with a canopy in the form of a hyperbolic paraboloid, demonstrates the affinity between the architecture of pavilions on the one hand, and on the other hand, some of the more modest or minor architectural functions that were innovated in the modern period. One of the few ‘hypars’ left over from post-war Britain, its butterfly-shaped canopy is not just a reminder of older etymological roots of the term pavilion, but also raises questions in the present-day about the conservation of recent architectural heritage that was perhaps only ever meant to be temporarily alighting in the landscape.

pavilion, Sam Scorer, service station, hyperbolic paraboloid, picturesque, ruin.

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Biographical note
Karolina Szynalska (BArch PG Dip MA ARB) is a practising architect, a lecturer in architecture at the University of Lincoln and the course leader (BA Hons Architecture) at the Hull School of Art and Design. Her main research interest is discourse analysis in regard to modernism, sustainability and ethical architecture. Since completing her Masters in architectural history at the Bartlett School of Architecture (University College London), Szynalska has continued to develop an interdisciplinary approach to architectural practice, scholarship and teaching. Recent activities include developing her professional practice and creating collaborations across the institutions in which she works.