The Council Chamber, Town Hall, 10 November 2010
What more suitable place than the centre of town for an Awards Evening in our 50th anniversary year? The Council Chamber has long since ceased to be the home for Borough Council meetings but it does still have an air of civic importance.
We were pleased to welcome back Bob Allen as our commentator, partly because he was the first chairman of the Society in post when the Awards scheme began and because he does this presentation so well. Although not one of the judging panel himself, his comments and summaries are made on behalf of the five anonymous judges. What follows here is a selection of his comments on the nominated schemes.
Isaacs, Wherry Quay, restoration of machine room - this loving restoration brings alive part of the story and history of this wonderful collection of old buildings; Isaacs has had various other awards.
Salthouse Harbour Hotel, Neptune Quay, new extension - a bold and uncompromising link with the original building and an interesting addition to the dock scene; not so keen on its rear appearance!
Athena Hall, Duke St, new student block - bold massing and effective articulation, some striking colour, useful proximity to other DCS buildings. Some judges liked it more than others did.
New garage and stained glass studio, 60 Orford St - beautifully detailed craftsmanship, but pediment suggests a temple!
New Baptist Church, Colchester Rd/Sidegate Lane West - worth thinking about, but great cross and windows oddly placed; not sure about' industrial' roof and prominent drain pipes.
New housing scheme (36 housing units) Clumpfield, Cambridge Drive - interesting massing and nicely pitched roofs; pleasantly curved drive.
New houses, 53-55 Westerfield Road - debatable use of pastiche Edwardian style but they replace a 1950s house and do relate to neighbouring houses; sash windows nicely in scale.
Paving and landscaping Tower Ramparts to Northgate St - paving well done with expensive materials used well; new signage not too tall.
Ceramic tiling, E of England Co-op store, Queensway - unusual replacement for windows but sad to see a shop has to look like this.
New housing, Grosvenor Close, The Albany, Tuddenham Road, 7 houses in curved terrace - fabulous site with trees and good quality materials but odd-looking 'pavilions'.
Jerwood Dance House, The Mill, Foundry Lane - great asset for the town; inviting interior (includes a public cafe); but powdered colour on cladding not very stable?
Suffolk One College, Scrivener Dr/London Rd - a big bold statement with many good features although some detailing doesn't work; difficult to get a good view of the outside.
Enhancement scheme, Giles Circus - an opportunity taken to create a new urban space and make a better setting for the handsome buildings around it; re-siting Grandma to provide seating; efforts made to soften the presence of vehicles.
Children's Centre, conversion and new building, Copleston School- a simple re-modelling; effective frontage but rear side forbidding!
University Campus Suffolk, Block L, new entrance and frontage - quite successful with good detailing of railings.
After these perceptive but deliberately disguised comments, Bob Allen was able to announce the various awards, which were as follows:
Award of Distinction for the enhancement of Giles Circus
Client, Design and Contractor - Ipswich Borough Council
Commendation for Salthouse Harbour Hotel extension
Client Gough Hotels, Design by Barefoot & Gilles, Contractor ISG Jackson Ltd
Commendation for Clumpfield new housing scheme, Cambridge Drive
Client Orwell Housing Association, Design by Barefoot & Gilles, Contractor ISG Jackson Ltd (photo below)
Commendation for 53-55 Westerfield Rd, two new private houses
Client and Contractor Gary Sallows, Design by Last & Tricker Partnership (photo below)
The awards were presented by the Mayor, Councillor Jane Chambers, after which there was plenty of time for drinks, nibbles and conversation.