More than 500 leaders and innovators from across the construction sector gathered at the NEC, Birmingham last night (Tuesday 6 October 2015) for the Inaugural Structural Timber Awards. The prestigious award ceremony truly made its mark on the timber sector, rewarding outstanding projects, innovative products and dynamic people promoting excellence in structural timber across the UK.
The awards were hosted by timber industry stalwart and Chairman of the Structural Timber Association, Andrew Carpenter. A pre-dinner speech was delivered by renowned architect, television personality, lecturer and writer George Clarke and proved to be a crowd-pleaser. George provided the room with a whistle-stop tour of his extraordinary career – including the renovation of a 1979 Ace Excellence six-berth Static Caravan he bought for £300 and transformed into a spacious luxury holiday retreat.
The big winner of the night, the Sky Believe in Better Building, scooped five awards – The project team including Architect – Arup Associates and Structural Frame Provider – B&K Structures were kept firmly on their feet, winning the prestigious ‘Winner of Winners Award’ alongside Best Commercial Project of the Year, Best Education Project, Best Low Energy Project and Architect of the Year for Arup Associates.
The Sky Believe in Better Building is a pioneering office and training facility, which holds the title of being the first four storey open-plan massivholz office in the UK. Timber was selected as the core structural component on the build due to its speed of construction and sustainability credentials, with offsite manufacture bringing huge programme benefits and minimising disturbance. This revolutionary building indisputably demonstrates the potential for timber offices to deliver high speed, high quality and exemplar sustainable commercial buildings, opening up an exciting new UK market for timber.
Awards Host and Head of the judging panel, Andrew Carpenter said of the night: “I am proud to have played a part in the inaugural Structural Timber Awards. I have been blown away by the breadth and quality of entries that we have received. It is truly inspiring to see so much activity in the sector and to witness so many boundaries being pushed. The depth of expertise across all categories was impressive and the exceptional number of entries clearly demonstrates the upturn in the industry – placing the Structural Timber Awards as a high point in the construction calendar.”
The full list of award winners included:
- Architect of the Year – Arup Associates, Believe in Better Building;
- Best Commercial Project – Arup Associates, Believe in Better Building;
- Best Education Project – B & K Structures, Believe in Better Building;
- Best Healthcare Project – Alan Baxter, Maggie’s Oxford;
- Best Low Energy Project – Arup Associates, Believe in Better Building;
- Best Private Housing Project – Wilkinson King Architects, Private House;
- Best Retail Project – Wiehag, The Crossrail Station;
- Best Social Housing Project – Accord Group, LoCal Homes;
- Client of the Year – Veolia;
- Contractor of the Year – Morgan Sindall , New Park and Northway Primary Schools, Liverpool;
- Engineer of the Year – Engenuiti, Banyan Wharf;
- Pioneer Award – Ramboll UK;
- Product Innovation Award – Arup, 4.5T ‘superbeams’;
- Project of the Year – HESS Timber, Leeds Recycling and Energy Recovery Facility;
- Winner of Winners Award – Arup Associates and B & K Structures, Believe in Better Building.
There has already been a large amount of attention focused on next year’s awards, which will be returning 18 October 2016.