Dr Nick Webb is an architect and researcher based at the Liverpool School of Architecture. His research investigates how digital tools and techniques can be used as methods to enhance and critique our understanding of historic works of architecture. Nick’s research focuses on methods that enable new information to be provided that would have been almost impossible in a pre-digital context, including digital capture technologies such as laser scanning, three-dimensional digital modelling and analysis, and immersive virtual reality techniques. He is a registered architect and has previously worked in architectural practice, mainly community and social housing projects.
Nick’s research currently focusses on existing historic works of architecture, notably investigating the design and construction of English medieval vaulting aided by digital techniques in collaboration with Dr Alex Buchanan. The project, Tracing the Past, has analysed many significant sites in England including the cathedrals of Wells and Exeter, attracted funding from the Arts and Humanities Research Council, brought together international experts in vault design by hosting two symposiums, made their data available publicly via the Archaeology Data Service and Sketchfab, as well as organising a series of public talks and workshops to share their findings. The project resulted in a book, published by Routledge and co-authored alongside Dr Alex Buchanan and Dr James Hillson ‘Digital Analysis of Vaults in English Medieval Architecture.’
Nick is also interested in unbuilt, partially built and destroyed architecture, or designs that were not built at all. He previously researched Sir Edwin Lutyens’ partially built design for Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral. He has also collaborated with Dr Zoe Alker to investigate Bentham’s unbuilt Panopticon Prison.
As a registered architect, Nick spends a large amount of time teaching design studio at the LSA. He has tutored in BA1 (2009-2014), ran a design studio in BA2 (2013-2018), and co-led a heritage related design studio alongside Dr Ataa Alsalloum in BA3 (2019-present). He was also year lead for BA2 between 2016-2018. Nick has been part of the BA Admissions Team since 2013 and has been the department’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Co-Champion since 2020.
Nick is currently accepting PhD students interested in digital analysis of historic architecture, including medieval vault design, digital scanning methods, as well as unbuilt, damaged and destroyed architecture.