Following RIBA's announcement of the 2014 Stirling Prize winner, two more UK-based projects won big in the 2014 Manser Medal and the Stephen Lawrence Prize competitions.
The Stormy Castle in Wales by Loyn & Co. Architects received the Manser Medal, which is the UK's highest housing design award (shortlist). The Stephen Lawrence Prize, which recognizes fresh architectural talent and smaller construction budgets, went to a residential project this year: House No 7 in Scotland by Denizen Works (shortlist).
Both winners received their awards at an awards ceremony in RIBA in London on October 16.
Check them out below.
2014 MANSER MEDAL WINNER: Stormy Castle in Wales by Loyn & Co. Architects
"Stormy Castle is a contemporary private house in an area of outstanding natural beauty on a hillside on the Gower peninsula. The client, a local couple who know the area well, had always wanted to build something which reflected the quality of the surroundings and, conversely, made the most of the site in terms of views, landscape design and topography."
"The resulting design is a tour de force in terms of space, natural light, level changes and connection to the landscape. The palette of materials is kept to a minimum – polished concrete floors flowing throughout, shuttered concrete walls, crystalline white ceilings, full height glazing to maximise the views and Corten steel accents to external doors, cladding and the roof of the retained barn."
"Although the overall building is 725 square metres in area, much of it is cleverly hidden in the ground, emerging on three levels to make the most of the orientation and external landscape. The jury was impressed by the sustainability credentials, with a comprehensive range of energy, recycling and heating strategies incorporated into the design, which will be invaluable in dealing with such a large footprint."
"By far the most striking element in the design is the quality of light which reaches deep into the interior. In many ways this is as much an art gallery as a home, with the areas in between the living ‘rooms’ inviting interventions – indeed the client is keen to explore this over time. The multi levels and interplay between inside and out create a range of private, intimate courtyards and more exposed external spaces which allow the building to connect, whatever the climate."
"This is a brave design in an area of Wales where the more conservative, vernacular indigenous design solution usually holds sway. The jury was therefore delighted to see a contemporary design of quality win through and reward an ambitious client and architect."
The judges for the award are Michael Manser CBE (chair), Robert Hiscox, Honorary President of Hiscox, Lady Patty Hopkins, Carl Turner (winner of the 2013 Manser Medal) and Tony Chapman, RIBA Head of Awards.
2014 RIBA STEPHEN LAWRENCE PRIZE WINNER: House No 7 by Denizen Works
"This restoration and extension of a ruined, B-listed, Tiree black-house effectively provides two houses within a single curtilage. The extensions follow the spirit of local agricultural buildings in their materials, roof forms and particularly in the use of corrugated cladding. The tradition of reconstructing Hebridean black-houses with black tarred roofing, rather than their original thatched roofs (held down by stone weighted netting), is sufficiently long established to have become an alternative local vernacular. This approach, allied to the utilitarian agricultural appearance of the extensions, creates an external form that is both contextual and appropriate."
"Set in the southern coat of the island, House no. 7 enjoys views of Duin Bay to the south, set within a typical Tiree undulating machair, punctuated by other traditional housing. Without any natural shelter from the wind, the house hunkers down within its exposed setting. However, the interior is designed to be light, bright, welcoming and cosy, in contrast with the robust forms of the exterior. Extensive use of timber, alongside the exposed natural stone, enhances the perceived warmth of the interior while heating is provided through an air-source heat pump."
"Internal circulation and the connection between the two discreet living spaces is provided by a glass-roofed corridor which again enhances light to the interior, contributing to the dual character of this extraordinary development as a clever play on the traditional in the exterior and a dwelling full of delight within. The quality of this internal space is such that it is difficult to express in words, or indeed, show in photographs, its impact in three dimensions. It is truly inspiring, with the quality of the detailing adding to the sense of pleasure it creates, and indeed inspiring a reassessment of the quality of thought behind the design."
"What is particularly noteworthy about this entry is the quality of the detailing; the way in which materials have been selected and their relationship to each other. This house is notable for the tactile pleasure which is invoked by every simple activity, even just opening a door. It is full of thoughtful playfulness."
The judges for the 2014 Stephen Lawrence Prize were: Baroness Lawrence of Clarendon; Doreen Lawrence CBE - the mother of Stephen Lawrence; Marco Goldschmied, RIBA Past President and Founder of the Marco Goldschmied Foundation (which established the RIBA Stephen Lawrence Prize in 1998); Anthony Boulanger, Partner at AY Architects, winners of the 2013 Stephen Lawrence Prize; and Joe Morris, Director at Duggan Morris Architects, winners of the Prize in 2012.
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