Lina’s ‘Break Free’ wins prison garden poll

RGU student Lina Khairy, Charlie McConnell of Robertson Construction and j' of RGU and Sanctuary Scotland.

The site of Aberdeen’s former HMP Craiginches will soon feature a communal garden inspired by the historic prison’s past.

Architecture student Lina Khairy’s ‘Break Free’ design topped a public poll of Torry residents, narrowly beating the creative efforts of two of her course mates.

Lina’s design includes the face of the old prison clock and granite blocks from the perimeter wall.

Sanctuary is creating the garden as a community benefit of the 124 affordable homes we are building in partnership with the Scottish Government and Aberdeen City Council.

A drawing of Lina's design

Lina, a second-year student at Robert Gordon University, said: “It must have been very saddening to see this wall come down but at the same time very liberating – that’s how I came up with ‘Break Free’.

“The design is quite simple. I basically reconstructed the wall but in a way that’s more interactive. The wall will be quite bulky at one end but slowly break down as it progresses through the garden. The people of Torry will be able to sit, relax and play around this wall.

“I considered myself a winner just by participating in the design competition because it was a big learning experience. To actually win – I still have no words for that.”

A short film on the project can be viewed below or on the Sanctuary Group YouTube channel.