Dumfries and Galloway Council has used the 2016 Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design to launch its first Design Awards for the best designed buildings in the region.
From textiles and technology to architecture and fashion, the 2016 Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design’s year-long programme will shine a spotlight on Scotland’s greatest assets and icons, as well as its unique hidden gems.
An independent panel of judges met and conducted site visits to consider the entries which came from Architects from both within Dumfries and Galloway and from out-with the Region (although all of the projects submitted were buildings within Dumfries and Galloway).
Awards to the winners of each category were presented at a ceremony held at Dumfries and Galloway Council’s HQ (5th July). All entrants, architects, builders and home owners each received a certificate, with the overall winner in each category receiving a kaleidoscope, hand made by local craftsman Sam Samson, marking the 200th anniversary of the kaleidoscope.
The New Build Non-Residential Award went to Kirroughtree Visitor Centre, Newton Stewart, designed by jmarchitects for Forestry Commission Scotland and constructed by Robertsons.
Winner of the New Build Residential Award was Lane’s End at Thornhill, designed by John Murray Architects, constructed by 3b Construction Ltd.
Chair of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s Economy, Environment and Infrastructure Committee, Councillor Colin Smyth said: “I am delighted to be able to present these awards in recognition of the stunning, innovative and diverse architecture throughout our region. The overall standard has been excellent and I know the judges had some very difficult decisions to make. Buildings clearly need to be practical and serve a purpose, but our design awards recognise the fact that some buildings in our region have gone beyond the initial remit to achieve excellence and make outstanding contributions to our landscape and built environment.”
New Build Residential: Lane’s End, Thornhill – John Murray Architect for Ms F Blackwood constructed by 3b Construction Ltd
Commendation: Westbrook, Moffat – Simon Winstanley Architects for Mr & Mrs A Graham constructed by 3b Construction Ltd
New Build Non-Residential: Kirroughtree Visitor Centre, Newton Stewart – jmarchitects for Forestry Commission Scotland constructed by Robertstons
Commendation: Brockloch Treehouse, Kirkpatrick Durham – Echo Living (designed and constructed) for J Nicholson
Works to Existing Buildings Award: Killylour, Shawhead – Simon Winstanley Architects for Ms Chalmers and Mr McBride constructed by Andrew Campbell & Sons
Commendation: Float Bay Cottage – ARPL Architects for Mr A Brown constructed by 3b Construction Ltd
Judging Panel Feedback
New Build Residential
Lane’s End, Thornhill – John Murray Architect for Ms F Blackwood constructed by 3b Construction Ltd
This is a very successful and sensitive integration of a new building into a complex and relatively constrained urban setting. The building is deceptively modest but is a hardworking and confident scheme which creates distinct experiences from lane, to court, to inside/out built spaces. The judges particularly liked the beautiful, layered courtyard garden and contemporary rear elevation which successfully complements the more restrained approach to the street elevation. The level of craftsmanship in the detailing to the building also helps with the overall success of the scheme.
Westbrook, Moffat – Simon Winstanley Architects for Mr & Mrs A Graham constructed by 3b Construction Ltd
This scheme represents successful and confident spatial planning of the site in terms of the flow in the sequence of spaces. This is particularly so in the way the lower wing frames the garden area forming an open courtyard affect. The judges appreciated the rigorousness of keeping to a very simple, well-crafted form which follows, but isn’t bound by, the context of its large plot.
This is a simple and straightforward structure designed to meet the specific needs of the occupant which it appears to do very successfully. There is good use of the levels and positioning on the site making the most of its lochside location whilst still being fully accessible. Its conventional appearance belies a very sophisticated climate control and waste management system.
This is a very large house on the outskirts of Dalbeattie which has been broken into a number of architectural elements in an attempt to reduce its visual impact. The peripheral landscaping and stonewalling have made good use of local materials. It is a commendable self-build project which has been competently executed using local contractors.
Linnet, Loch Arthur Community, Beeswing
The building has a very competent and simple vernacular design which could be replicated in other parts of the community and beyond. The scheme is well detailed and constructed from well used materials, the use of slate in particular helps to provide the building with a sense of solidity. The building creates an important resource for members of the Locharthur community.
Hallam House, Beeswing
This scheme provides a pleasant, welcoming site with a simple but well-designed form. The use of the curve provides a more enclosed, courtyard feel which gives an impression of security. The judges liked the simple modular design that provides safe entry for each unit. The scheme integrates and relates well to neighbouring properties in the village.
The Foxhole, Kirkcudbright
This is a simply designed, well executed and well detailed building set on the suburban approach to Kirkcudbright. The building is situated set back and unobtrusively on the site and a simple range of materials, carefully selected and well-handles lend the building a sense of modesty.
Oyster Cabin, Carrick
This is a well crafted and elegant replacement for a previous hut on the site which benefits from an exceptional location. The building is of a simple form and makes good use of simple materials in a sensitive location. The pv roof panels have been particularly well managed adding interest to the roofscape.
New Build Non-Residential
Kirroughtree Visitor Centre, Newton Stewart – jmarchitects for Forestry Commission Scotland constructed by Robertsons
This scheme represents a very successful whole site response to the needs of the site, designed with sensitivity to integrate within its wider setting. The judges felt that the building provides a real sense of arrival and welcome and successfully provides a hierarchy of easily understood spaces for all visitors which fully connects the inside and outside areas. The design is well disciplined and subtle using a limited but successful pallet of materials.
Brockloch Treehouse, Kirkpatrick Durham – Echo Living (designed and constructed) for J Nicholson
The judges considered the scheme to be a complete joy providing a sense of intrigue and adventure. The scheme showed a real confidence, competence and sensitivity in handling the site in a unique and innovative way. There is a very careful attention to detail in the manner of its total design and sustainable approach.
Loch Ken Eco Bothies
This is a successful small modular development in a private setting providing adaptable and comfortable tourist accommodation. Due to the construction method the modules have a very light touch on the earth and are also off grid providing a sustainable and low impact response to the needs of tourists.
Works to Existing Buildings
Killylour, Shawhead – Simon Winstanley Architects for Ms Chalmers and Mr McBride constructed by Andrew Campbell & Sons
This scheme is a sensitive, respectful and well detailed approach to a previously altered building. The judges particularly liked this modest and functional extension which has avoided the temptation to over-enlarge or add too much thereby enhancing its rural setting.
Float Bay Cottage – ARPL Architects for Mr A Brown constructed by 3b Construction Ltd
This scheme is a well-crafted addition to an existing cottage to form a modern interpretation of a steading complex set in a stunning coastal location. The judges considered that the building responds well to its landscape setting and creates coherent internal spaces. The response to the contours of the site and internal level changes were particularly successful.
Girthhead Mill, Johnstonebridge
This is a very successful conversion of a modestly sized former mill which sits in an undulating landscape that hugs the building. The conversion is particularly successful in terms of the hierarchy of internal spaces and experiences that have been created.
Three Merkland Long Barn, Hardgate
This is a careful and well detailed conversion of a long range of outbuildings. The scheme has been very sensitively executed providing spacious modern accommodation with minimal alteration to the building.
Theatre Royal, Dumfries
The theatre makes an important contribution to the social and artistic life of Dumfries and the project has given it a whole new lease of life. The provision of additional high quality ancillary spaces will benefit the whole town. The judges acknowledged that it had been a difficult and complex project to link several different buildings together of different ages reconciling both user and architectural needs in an historical context.