Tintagel Castle: Bridge Design Competition

Submission: July 21, 2015
Registration:  July 21, 2015
Language: English
Location: Tintagel, Cornwall, UK
Prizes: x6 honorarium of £5,000
Type: Restricted


The international, two-stage design competition seeks an inspired and dedicated team, comprising both architectural and engineering expertise, for the circa £4m bridge project.

One of the most spectacular historic sites within English Heritage’s care and inextricably linked to the legend of King Arthur, Tintagel Castle in north Cornwall has been prized throughout history for its elemental beauty and spirit of place. The ruins of the 13th-century castle are an outstanding example of a man-made monument interacting with a natural feature – the narrow land-bridge, much eroded over the centuries, linking the headland (or Island) with the mainland.

The new footbridge will be 28 metres higher than the current crossing and 72 metres in span. It will open up exhilarating views of Tintagel, the surrounding coastline and Atlantic seascape as it traces the path, now lost through collapse and erosion, of the original land-link. It is expected to transform the visitor experience, improving both visitors’ understanding of the site and access.

English Heritage envisages an elegant, even structurally daring, concept which is beautiful in its own right and sensitively-balanced with the landscape and exceptional surroundings – Tintagel Castle is a Scheduled Ancient Monument lying within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

The competition is being run in accordance with European Union procurement guidelines under the Restricted Procedure. Multi-disciplinary teams with expertise in contemporary design and engineering are invited to enter providing they can satisfy the criteria in the Expression of Interest document available through the competition website. No design is sought at the first stage of the competition.

The two-stage design competition is comprised of:

Stage One

An international call for participation – an Expression of Interest (EOI) – that is aimed at attracting technically competent and professional teams to register their interest in the project, as described in this document. A shortlist of up to six teams will be selected to move to Stage Two. Successful and unsuccessful teams will be contacted by MRC prior to the commencement of Stage Two.

Stage Two

The shortlisted teams will be asked to produce a concept design. A brief will be issued to these teams, as well as further information about the site. A technical panel will review the entries and a final Jury will conduct interviews prior to a winner being announced.

An honorarium of £5,000 will be awarded to each of the shortlisted teams following the selection of the winner.


The project’s key objectives are:

  • exemplary design, which is sensitively balanced with a landscape of national, historic and mystical significance
  • design capable of attracting and coping with projected visitor numbers of circa 250,000 per year and local climate conditions – notably high winds
  • design incorporating a construction methodology, driven by build-ability, minimal construction impact on archaeology, landscape and constrained access
  • improving physical and intellectual access for visitors while also enhancing the visual and sensory pleasure of arrival and introducing new viewpoints
  • sustainable place-making and conservation: protecting the surrounding heritage, archaeology and landscape
  • a bridge with low maintenance and upkeep

Wider themes informing English Heritage’s strategic approach include:

  • awareness of Cornish identity, and respect for the local vernacular, whilst allowing for innovation
  • developing Tintagel’s local, national and international profile as a destination
  • improving visitor orientation, circulation and relieving areas of concentrated visitor flows
  • engaging visitors with Tintagel’s history, legends and literature and enhancing the experience of exploring the Island


Your response should be both well written and highly visual.

Responses should be submitted as separate electronic files (format specified below) using the online submission form: competitions.malcolmreading.co.uk/tintagel/enter

Please refer to the Evaluation Criteria section for the scoring approach.

1. Pre-Qualification Questionnaire (PQQ)

Please see the Pre-Qualification Questionnaire in Appendices A and B.

The PQQ is provided as both a Word document (Appendix A) and an Excel
file (Appendix B). It is not available in any other formats. Competitors should complete the Excel version, and also provide a PDF version (based on the Word template), which includes any necessary appendices.Teams may apply their own formatting to the PDF submission, providing they do not change the order of the questions.

2.Team Composition

We are looking for interesting team collaborations to undertake this project. Please tell us why you have brought together the team members you have and why you think the team will deliver a successful project.

Please provide a summary of the details of each of your proposed team members. State who will be the lead consultant (team lead). Multi-disciplinary teams composed of both emerging and established firms will be looked upon favourably.

3. Relevant Experience

Help us understand how you would approach the project. Frame this with your understanding of the emerging brief as set out within Part One of this EOI document. Please provide examples of relevant projects or experience that demonstrate your approach to similar challenges and how you have worked

to maximise value for the client or end user.These examples should include analysis of programme, budget and build-ability, as well as a description of your approach to site problems and your design solutions.Your response should convince us of why your team is appropriate for this commission.

You should limit your response to two relevant examples.

4. Press Statement

Each team should also provide a 150-word snapshot of the practice or collaboration that can be used for press in the event of the team being shortlisted.This statement should include the lead consultant’s website (if you have one).

5. Forms

Please complete the Submission and Declaration Forms (Appendix E) and upload them with your submission.

Go to the competition site