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Cork House wins Stephen Lawrence Prize 2019

08 October 2019

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has today (Tuesday 8 October) named Cork House, an ingenious carbon-neutral private house in Berkshire, made almost entirely from cork, as winner of the 2019 Stephen Lawrence Prize.

Clockwise from left with photographer credits: Cork House © Ricky Jones, Cork House © Alex de Rijke, Cork House © Magnus Dennis, Cork House © David Grandorge

Cork House, by Matthew Barnett Howland with Dido Milne and Oliver Wilton has solid structural cork walls and a cork roof. All the cork components simply slot together, without glue, enabling them to be easily disassembled, reused or recycled. Located in the grounds of a Grade II listed 19th century mill house, it beautifully reflects and respects its natural surroundings.

The Stephen Lawrence Prize aims to encourage new, experimental architectural talent, celebrating and rewarding projects with a construction budget of less than £1 million. First awarded in 1998 in memory of Stephen Lawrence, who was taking steps to become an architect before his untimely death in 1993, the £5,000 Prize has been sponsored by the Marco Goldschmied Foundation since its inception.

Stephen Lawrence Prize founder Marco Goldschmied said:

“Cork House is a unique fusion of ancient construction methods and cutting-edge technical research to produce a highly innovative, low carbon solution with a wide variety of applications from mass housing to emergency shelters. We are delighted to present Matthew Barnett Howland, Dido Milne and Oliver Wilton with the Stephen Lawrence Prize 2019.

In addition, the judges and I would also to give a special mention and £1,000 award to an ingenious and beautifully detailed family home on the site of a tumbledown double garage, Pocket House by Tikari Works.”


Notes to editors

1. For more press information contact, 020 7307 3813

2. View and download press images of Cork House here

3. View and download press images of Pocket House here

4. The judges for the 2019 Stephen Lawrence Prize were Baroness Lawrence of Clarendon, Doreen Lawrence OBE, the mother of Stephen Lawrence; Marco Goldschmied, RIBA Past President and Founder of the Marco Goldschmied Foundation, which established the Stephen Lawrence Prize in 1998, and Anna Liu, Tonkin Liu, who won the 2018 Stephen Lawrence Prize.

5. Previous winners of the Stephen Lawrence Prize include Old Shed New House by Tonkin Liu Architects (2018),The Houseboat by Mole Architects (2017), House of Trace by Tsuruta Architects (2016); The Fishing Hut by Niall McLaughlin Architects (2015); House No 7 by Denizen Works (2014); Montpelier Community Nursery by AY Architects (2013); Kings Grove by Duggan Morris Architects (2012); and St Patrick's Primary School Library and Music Room by Coffey Architects (2011).

6. The Architects’ Journal is media partner for the RIBA awards, including the Stephen Lawrence Prize. For more information visit:

7. The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) is a global professional membership body that serves its members and society in order to deliver better buildings and places, stronger communities and a sustainable environment. Follow us on Twitter for regular RIBA updates

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