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The UK’s best new buildings - 2017 RIBA National Awards for architecture announced

RIBA National Award-winning buildings set the standard for good architecture.

22 June 2017

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has today (22 June 2017) announced the winners of the prestigious 2017 RIBA National Awards for architecture.

The 49 winners include an ecological straw-clad office building in Norwich (The Enterprise Centre); an exemplary social housing development next to a railway viaduct in London (Silchester); the world’s first ‘vertical pier’ (British Airways i360); the ‘top-notch’ transformation of Leicester Cathedral including the rediscovered tomb of Richard III (Leicester Cathedral's Richard III Project 'With Dignity and Honour'); and a striking new biomass power plant in Sheffield (Blackburn Meadows Biomass).

Top left; Victoria Gate Arcades by ACME (photo Jack Hobhouse), top right; Wolfson Tree Management Centre by Invisible Studio (photo Andy Matthews) centre right; Tate Modern Blavatnik Building by Herzog & de Meuron (photo: Iwan Baan), bottom left; Dujardin Mews by Karakusevic Carson with Maccreanor Lavington (photo: Mark Hadden); bottom right; Dyson Campus Expansion by WilkinsonEyre (photo: WilkinsonEyre).

RIBA National Award-winning buildings set the standard for good architecture. The shortlist for the highly coveted RIBA Stirling Prize for the UK’s best building of the year will be drawn from the list of 49 RIBA National Award-winning projects announced today. Other highlights from today’s winners include:

Victoria Gate Arcades – an instant landmark for Leeds, this large, new shopping centre has a consistent crafted feel (right down to the car park),taking its design cues from the nearby 19th century arcades, with its woven geometric pattered façade acting as a nod to the city's bygone wool trade.

Wolfson Tree Management Centre – the carbon footprint has been kept to a minimum in these two new timber buildings at the National Arboretum in Gloucestershire. Constructed by local trainee carpenters it uses locally sourced timber to both form the structure and clad the buildings.

Dyson Campus Expansion – three new buildings have been added to this Wiltshire HQ including a café, multi-purpose sports centre and R&D facilities. The external reflective glass disappears into the landscape, a mirror to its lush landscaped surroundings.

Tate Modern Blavatnik Building (also known as Switch House) – this monumental extension to Tate Modern on London’s Bankside has generous gallery spaces leading to a free rooftop gallery offering a near-panoramic view of the capital. The complexity of the building’s perforated chain mail façade sets a new standard for the use of brick.

Dujardin Mews - The first phase of the wider regeneration of Ponders End in north London, is the first council-led, social housing delivered by the local borough of Enfield in 40 years. These much needed new homes, built in the vernacular of London brick, set a benchmark for the regeneration of Enfield.

Speaking today, RIBA President Jane Duncan said: “Congratulations to the clients and their design teams for the extraordinary talent, ambition and enthusiasm that has led to this year’s roll-call of phenomenal buildings.

“RIBA National Awards provide insight into emerging design trends, as well as showing how well the profession responds to economic drivers. I am delighted to see such confident, innovative and ambitious architecture delivered in such challenging times.

“The lack of high quality new housing is a huge issue in the UK so I am particularly pleased to see great examples of well designed, sustainable new homes amongst our award winners. Derwenthorpe in York is a fantastic socially and environmentally sustainable housing development; in London, Silchester and Ponders End are both great examples of estate regeneration bringing thoughtful and community based affordable housing to the capital. Sadly though, these projects are exceptions. We all deserve a well-designed, affordable home, wherever we live in the country. I encourage other local authorities, developers and clients to look at these projects as exemplars.

“I am pleased to award a selection of high-quality new school buildings such as The Laboratory, Dulwich College and new music facilities at Wells Cathedral School, that will benefit generations of children and teachers. However, after a few boom years, which saw a clutch of award winning, cost effective state school buildings, it’s disappointing that there are none on this year’s list. Well-designed schools support improved student achievement, and staff and student wellbeing and should be part of educational aspirations for all our schools, not just those in the fee-paying sector.

“This year’s list also reveals the power of well-designed buildings to provide excitement and pleasure; the new Hastings Pier, Brighton’s radical vertical pier the i360 and the Leeds’ Victoria Gate shopping centre are part of a new generation of destination buildings, set to delight visitors and locals alike. Biomass plant Blackburn Meadows shows that contemporary British industrial and infrastructure architecture can be as iconic and as beautiful as its Victorian predecessors.”

“Brick remains the top choice for many projects in London; Tate Modern's Blavatnik Building and Barrett’s Grove are two excellent examples. This traditional building material remains very much part of modern London's architectural vernacular. In the rest of the country, timber is growing in popularity; its versatility and relative affordability have seen it embraced across the country from intricate external lattice timber cladding at Bedales School to the beautifully crafted interiors of repurposed industrial unites in Manchester at Finlays Warehouse.”

The full list of winners follows:

Name of project Architect Location Typology


Carrowbreck Meadow

Hamson Barron Smith

Norwich, Norfolk, England

Housing development - private


The Enterprise Centre, University of East Anglia


Norwich, Norfolk, England



Peacock House

BHSF Architekten with Studio-P

Aldeburgh, Suffolk, England

Individual house


St Albans Abbey

Richard Griffiths Architects

St Albans, Hertfordshire, England

Place of worship


Vajrasana Buddhist Retreat Centre

Walters & Cohen Architects

Walsham le Willows, Suffolk, England

Place of worship


The Welding Institute

Eric Parry Architects

Great Abington, Cambridge, England

Research institution


Leicester Cathedral's Richard III Project 'With Dignity and Honour'

van Heyningen and Haward Architects

Leicester, England

Place of worship


The Laboratory, Dulwich College


Dulwich, south London, England

School - independent/public


No 49

31/44 Architects

Hither Green, southeast London, England

Individual House


The Loom

Duggan Morris Architects

Whitechapel, east London, England



8 Finsbury Circus


City of London



40 Chancery Lane

Bennetts Associates

Holborn, central London, England

Mixed use building - Workspace/office and retail


King's College School

Allies and Morrison

Wimbledon, southwest London, England

School - independent/public


New Scotland Yard

Allford Hall Monaghan Morris

Embankment, central London, England



Paradise Gardens

Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands

Hammersmith, west London, England

Housing development – private


Photography Studio for Juergen Teller

6a architects

Ladbroke Grove, west London, England

Mixed use building – workspace and residential



Haworth Tompkins

Notting Hill, west London, England

Housing development - social


Barretts Grove

Amin Taha + Groupwork

Stoke Newington, north London, England

Housing development – private


Dujardin Mews

Karakusevic Carson Architects with Maccreanor Lavington

Ponders End, north London, England

Housing development – social


Tate Modern's Blavatnik Building

Herzog & de Meuron

Bankside, central London, England



The British Museum World Conservation and Exhibitions Centre

Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners

Bloomsbury, central London, England



Walmer Yard

P Salter and Associates with Mole Architects John Comparelli Architects

Holland Park, west London, England

Housing development - private


Live Works

Flanagan Lawrence with Tench Maddison Ash Architects

Newcastle Upon Tyne, England



Shawm House

MawsonKerr Architects

West Woodburn, Northumberland, England

Individual house


The Word

FaulknerBrowns Architects

South Shields, South Tyneside, England

Library and cultural venue


Chetham's School of Music - Stoller Hall

stephenson STUDIO

Manchester, England

School - independent/public


Finlays Warehouse

Stephenson Studio

Northern Quarter, Manchester, England

Housing development – private


Liverpool Philharmonic

Caruso St John Architects

Liverpool, England



Maggie's at the Robert Parfett Building

Foster + Partners

Christie Hospital, south Manchester, England



Fallahogey Studio

McGarry-Moon Architects Ltd

Kilrea, Northern Ireland



Bedales School Art and Design Building

Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios

Petersfield, Hampshire, England

School - independent/public


The Berrow Foundation Building and New Garden Building, Lincoln College

Stanton Williams

University of Oxford, Oxford, England



Magdalen College Library

Wright & Wright Architects

University of Oxford, Oxford, England



Warwick Hall Community Centre

Acanthus Clews Architects

Burford, Oxfordshire, England

Community space


Caring Wood

James Macdonald Wright and Niall Maxwell

near Maidstone, Kent, England

Individual house


Command of the Oceans

Baynes and Mitchell Architects

Chatham Historic Dockyard, Kent, England



Hastings Pier

dRMM Architects

Hastings, East Sussex, England



British Airways i360

Marks Barfield Architects

Brighton & Hove, England



South Street

Sandy Rendel Architects Ltd.

Lewes, East Sussex, England

Individual house


Dyson Campus Expansion


Malmesbury, Wiltshire., England



New Music Facilities for Wells Cathedral School

Eric Parry Architects

Wells, Somerset, England

School - independent/public


Wolfson Tree Management Centre

Invisible Studio

Westonbirt Arboretum, Gloucestershire, England



Remembrance Centre, National Memorial Arboretum

Glenn Howells Architects

Lichfield, Staffordshire



Blackburn Meadows Biomass


Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England

Energy infrastructure


Derwenthorpe Phase One

Studio Partington

York, north Yorkshire, England

Housing development – private


Victoria Gate Arcades


Leeds city centre, England



City of Glasgow College

Reiach and Hall Architects and Michael Laird Architects

Cathedral Street, Glasgow, Scotland

Further education college


Newhouse of Auchengee

Ann Nisbet Studio

Meikle Auchengree, North Ayrshire, Scotland

Individual house



Hoskins Architects

Speirs Wharf, Glasgow, Scotland



Notes to editors:

  1. For further press information contact Howard Crosskey in the RIBA press office: | +44 (0)20 7307 3761
  2. The Architects’ Journal is media partner for the RIBA National Awards and professional media partner for the RIBA Stirling Prize.
  3. The RIBA Awards have been running continuously since 1966 and are judged and presented locally. No matter the shape, size, budget or location, RIBA Award winning schemes set the standard for great architecture all across the country. RIBA Awards are for buildings in the UK by RIBA Chartered Architects and RIBA International Fellows. Entries are to be submitted to the region or nation in which the building is situated. Winners are considered for the RIBA Stirling Prize.
  4. The 2017 RIBA Stirling Prize shortlist will be announced on Thursday 20 July; the winner will be announced on Tuesday 31 October 2017.
  5. 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 @RIBA on Twitter for regular updates.

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