Manchester and Salford host a weekend of architecture and celebration as the prestigious RIBA Stirling Prize comes to town

On the evening of Saturday 13 October the winner of the 2012 Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Stirling Prize - the UK's hotly anticipated prize for the best building of the year - will be announced in Manchester. The celebrations include a civic reception at Manchester Town Hall in the presence of the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress of Manchester, followed by an awards dinner, at which the winner will be announced, at Manchester Central. The RIBA Stirling Prize awards ceremony will be hosted by BBC Radio 4 presenter Mark Lawson.

A travelling exhibition showing the six contenders for the prize will also be driving into the city asking people to vote for the building that they think should be crowned the winner. The exhibition inside a specially converted lorry, the 'Architruck', will be popping up outside MediaCityUK and in Albert Square.

Also on board at Albert Square on Saturday will be BBC TV's 'The Apprentice' star and RIBA architect Gabrielle Omar, who will be hosting a free 'Ask an Architect' session. Members of the public are encouraged to come along and ask questions or receive a free consultation from Gabrielle and other RIBA architects.

The RIBA Hub will also be showcasing the launch of the 'Continuity and Development: the work of Hodder + Partners' on Saturday, which focuses on the work of local architect and winner of the first RIBA Stirling Prize in 1996, Stephen Hodder MBE.

The RIBA's 'Architruck' will be open to the public at the following times and locations:

12 October 10am – 3pm – The Piazza at MediaCityUK

13 October 10am – 6pm – Albert Square, Manchester Town Hall

The travelling exhibition features great images and films that describe the RIBA Stirling Prize-shortlisted buildings and the stories of the architects who designed them. Visitors can vote for which project they think should win the prize. The exhibition features other exceptional buildings in the north west that have been contenders for the RIBA Stirling Prize in the past.

The six buildings competing for the 2012 RIBA Stirling Prize (including betting odds from William Hill) are:

  • The Hepworth Wakefield, Yorkshire by David Chipperfield Architects (William Hill odds: 3/1)
  • London Olympic Stadium by Populous (odds: 5/1)
  • The Lyric Theatre, Belfast by O’Donnell + Tuomey (odds: 4/1)
  • Maggie’s Centre, Gartnavel, Glasgow by OMA (odds: 9/2)
  • New Court, London by OMA with Allies and Morrison (odds: 4/1)
  • Sainsbury Laboratory, Cambridge by Stanton Williams (odds: 7/2)

Previous winners of the RIBA Stirling Prize include: The Evelyn Grace Academy, London (2011) and MAXXI Museum, Rome by Zaha Hadid Architects (2010), Maggies Centre at Charing Cross Hospital by Rogers, Stirk, Harbour + Parners (2009); Accordia by Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios/Alison Brooks Architects/Maccreanor Lavington (2008); The Museum of Modern Literature, Marbach am Neckar, Germany by David Chipperfield Architects (2007).

A limited number of tickets are still available to attend the RIBA Stirling Prize dinner at Manchester Central. To rub shoulders with some of the best of British architecture, see the link below:  

Notes to editors

  • For further press information, interviews with Gabrielle Omar or to organise filming on 'Architruck' please contact RIBA North West: Marc Heuston 0151 703 0107
  • Gabrielle Omar will be on the 'Architruck' from 12 - 4pm on Saturday 13 October. RIBA Hub, CUBE, 113-115 Portland Street, Manchester M1 6DW.
  • Images of the RIBA 'Architruck' and Gabrielle Omar can be downloaded here:
  • Images of the RIBA Stirling Prize-shortlisted buildings can be downloaded here:
  • The Observer is the national media partner for the prize, and The Architects' Journal is the trade media partner.
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