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The National Trust wins RIBA Client of the Year Award

The driving force behind Heneghan Peng’s Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre, the National Trust, has been named the 2013 RIBA Client of the Year

The conservation charity was praised for amassing a ‘formidable portfolio of projects’ including Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios’ RIBA Award-winning Chedworth Roman Villa and Cowper Griffith’s Stowe Visitor Centre.

Now into its 16th year, the award ‘honours the key role that a good client plays in the creation of fine architecture’ with the judges looking at the clients of the 2013 RIBA award-winning schemes.

The jury, which included architects Julia Barfield, Philip Gumuchdjian and the RIBA’s Tony Chapman, took in account ‘a track record of previous successful commissioning, particularly where this has led to previous RIBA awards’.

Explaining their decision, the judges highlighted the National Trust’s ‘enlightened approach’ which has ‘informed a series of previous award-winning projects, not least Heelis, its own 2006 headquarters building.’

Philip Gumuchdjian, acting chair of the RIBA Awards Group said: ‘Good patronage is the single most important influence on the quality of our built heritage.  The National Trust have won the 2013 Client of the Year Award because of the way they create the heritage of the future while protecting the heritage of the past, making special places even more special. 

Good patronage is the single most important influence on the quality of our built heritage

‘They commission talented, innovative, and often young practices to develop practical and beautiful projects that respond and add to the quality, enjoyment and appreciation of our stock of cultural and environmental wealth.  It takes a great and courageous client to deliver a great building and the Trust have proven their worth time and again.’

The announcement was made at the RIBA Stirling Prize 2013 event this evening (Thursday 26 September) at Central Saint Martins in London.

The shortlist in full

The National Trust, nominated by Heneghan Peng

Heneghan Peng’s Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre. Client: The National Trust

Heneghan Peng’s Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre. Client: The National Trust

‘From the beginning the National Trust had a clear and exacting vision of what needed to be delivered [for The Giants Causeway Visitor Centre]. Underlying everything was an absolute commitment by the Trust to maintain the integrity of the competition design.’

Linden Homes and Galliford Try, nominated by Alison Brooks Architects

Alison Brooks’ Newhall Be. Client: Linden Homes and Galliford Try

Alison Brooks’ Newhall Be. Client: Linden Homes and Galliford Try

‘Working with Linden Homes [on Newhall Be] was always civilised, always professional, always respectful and always focused. No bullshit. Five words sum up Linden Homes’ approach to ABA’s initial bid invitation, our masterplan concept and house type designs: “Yes, we can do that”.’

Manchester Metropolitan University, nominated by FCBS

Manchester Metropolitan University Business School. Client: Manchester Metropolitan University

Manchester Metropolitan University Business School. Client: Manchester Metropolitan University

‘Fundamental to the success of the project was its strong governance. MMU vice-chancellor John Brooks championed the project [at all levels], from the city leaders and business community right down to regularly attending site meetings.’

Hampshire County Council, nominated by Hampshire County Council Property Services

Runway’s End youth centre near Aldershot. Client: Hampshire County Council

Runway’s End youth centre near Aldershot. Client: Hampshire County Council

‘Under Colin Stansfield Smith, Hampshire became an established centre for design and this year the office has continued to thrive, in stark contrast to many professional practices across the rest of the country.’

Previous story (AJ 12.09.13)

RIBA Client of the Year Award shortlist revealed

The driving force behind Heneghan Peng’s Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre – The National Trust – is on the four-strong shortlist for the 2013 RIBA Client of the Year Award

The trust, which is also behind Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios’ RIBA Award-winning Chedworth Roman Villa and Cowper Griffith’s Stowe Visitor Centre, has emerged as a leading contender for the prestigious prize, now in its 16th year.

Housebuilders Linden Homes and Galliford Try – joint clients behind Alison Brooks’ Newhall Be – were the only other Stirling Prize finalist clients chosen to compete for the accolade, which was won last year by the Olympic Development Authority.

Public sector client Hampshire County Council was also shortlisted for its Runway’s End youth centre near Aldershot, designed by Hampshire County Council Property Services.

Manchester Metropolitan University completes the shortlist, nominated for its £75 million business school, again by FCBS, and for other planned new buildings.

The shortlist

Manchester Metropolitan University, nominated by FCBS

Manchester Metropolitan University Business School. Client: Manchester Metropolitan University

Manchester Metropolitan University Business School. Client: Manchester Metropolitan University

‘Fundamental to the success of the project was its strong governance. MMU vice-chancellor John Brooks championed the project [at all levels], from the city leaders and business community right down to regularly attending site meetings.’

The National Trust, nominated by Heneghan Peng

Heneghan Peng’s Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre. Client: The National Trust

Heneghan Peng’s Giant’s Causeway Visitor Centre. Client: The National Trust

‘From the beginning the National Trust had a clear and exacting vision of what needed to be delivered [for The Giants Causeway Visitor Centre]. Underlying everything was an absolute commitment by the Trust to maintain the integrity of the competition design.’

Linden Homes and Galliford Try, nominated by Alison Brooks Architects

Alison Brooks’ Newhall Be. Client: Linden Homes and Galliford Try

Alison Brooks’ Newhall Be. Client: Linden Homes and Galliford Try

‘Working with Linden Homes [on Newhall Be] was always civilised, always professional, always respectful and always focused. No bullshit. Five words sum up Linden Homes’ approach to ABA’s initial bid invitation, our masterplan concept and house type designs: “Yes, we can do that”.’

Hampshire County Council, nominated by Hampshire County Council Property Services

Runway’s End youth centre near Aldershot. Client: Hampshire County Council

Runway’s End youth centre near Aldershot. Client: Hampshire County Council

‘Under Colin Stansfield Smith, Hampshire became an established centre for design and this year the office has continued to thrive, in stark contrast to many professional practices across the rest of the country.’

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