The Wall of Answered Prayer
The design and location for a new landmark that aims to inspire the nation to pray and to 'remind generations of God's goodness' has been revealed
The Wall of Answered Prayer is a piece of public art with one million bricks, each representing an answered prayer. Its size and scope has been likened to the Angel of the North.
A global architectural design competition, spanning three years and run by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), saw more than 130 architecture practices from 28 countries submit their concepts. A 50-metre high arching structure by Snug Architects was chosen.
It has been revealed the structure will be situated on a 10-acre site between the M6, M42 and HS2 at Coleshill Manor on the edge of Birmingham, and is expected to be seen by more than 500,000 people every day. The land has been donated by the Edmiston family.
The winning submission by Snug Architects was commended for its unique interpretation of the brief and appropriately challenging design, featuring dynamic geometry and a stunning representation of a Mobius strip – (a non-orientable surface which seemingly has no beginning and no end). Its approach of incorporating the visitor centre within this piece of architectural public art also set it apart.
The aim of the project is 'to preserve and celebrate the UK’s Christian heritage' as well as inspire prayer. The architectural sculpture will use state of the art technology so that visitors can use their phones to read the answered prayers which each brick relates to.
CEO of The Wall of Answered Prayer Richard Gamble, said, 'This 15 year old vision is now becoming reality. I’m chuffed to bits with the design which handled perfectly the challenge of creating intrigue when being seen from afar, yet provides a truly interactive journey for those who visit. We want to create an iconic structure the nation will not only be proud of but find inspirational – it will be a landmark of hope.'
He added, 'The way we have managed to acquire the land is nothing short of miraculous, and it has been an incredible journey of prayer. We are extremely grateful to the Edmiston’s for their generosity and thank God for His masterplan to put us there.'
Speaking about the practice’s selection, Paul Bulkeley, Design Director at Snug Architects said, 'It is an honour to have been chosen to design and deliver this project of national significance. We are excited by the vision behind this ground-breaking project and are looking forward to working with the team to see it become a reality. At Snug Architects we believe this will be a structure that both inspires and engages visitors for many years to come.'
Based on the experience of the Angel of the North, The Wall team expect to attract between 150,000 and 200,000 visitors per annum and generate over £500 million in the first 10 years for the local economy.
Steve Maxey, Acting Chief Exec, North Warwickshire County Council stated, 'We are greatly excited by this project – I strongly believe it will come to be as loved by people locally and nationally as the Angel of the North, and brilliantly compliments our work on improving mental health and wellbeing.'
Subject to planning The Wall team intend to complete the build in time to launch with the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games.