Hay Castle Restoration awarded RSAW Building of the Year!

The overall winner of the 2024 Royal Society of Architects in Wales (RSAW) Building of the Year award has been revealed as Hay Castle, a medieval fortification and 17th century mansion house in the town of Hay-on-Wye.

The winning restoration project involved complex work by MICA Architects, and John Weaver Contractors to rescue and conserve the critically at-risk medieval keep and the Jacobean mansion, restore and open the ancient gate, the oldest of its kind in the UK, and reinstate the vital connection between the castle and the town and create a vibrant hub for the community and visitors.

The visiting judges were impressed to see that while the exterior of the building has been restored to its original aspect, reinstating the complex Jacobean roofline which links the two phases of original construction, the inside also offers an exciting and contemporary juxtaposition in design and a hub for arts, literature and learning including a café and exhibition space.

The judges said that the project, which also won the RSAW Conservation Award 2024, is 'an excellent example of how to approach conservation and heritage with spirit and expertise that has delivered a vibrant addition to the civic life of Hay-on-Wye'.

Additional winners announced at the awards evening that will go through to the national UK competition were Edge House by Hyde + Hyde Architects, Plas Glyn-y-Weddw Arts Centre Cafe by Mark Wray Architects, Sanderson Sculptures and Fold Engineering, Plas Hendy Stable Block by Studio Brassica Architects and sbarc/spark at Cardiff University by Hawkins\Brown, but it's Hay Castle that takes the ultimate crown of RSAW Building of the Year 2024, sponsored by EH Smith.

RIBA President, Muyiwa Oki, said: "This year's RIBA Award winning schemes showcase the true value of quality architecture, and the positive impact it has on people's lives. While carefully considering the needs of the environment, these truly remarkable places and spaces deliver for communities, for residents, for visitors, and people of all ages up and down the country. They are pinnacles of design excellence, and show what can be achieved when architects and clients collaborate successfully."

RSAW Jury Chair Kevin Hong, added: "From historic structures and heritage projects with new interventions to dramatic and idyllic domestic landscapes, there's colour, craftsmanship and rigour behind every one of these projects. They represent the best new buildings in Wales, and architecture well worth celebrating."

The RSAW Award 2024 winners will now be considered for a highly coveted RIBA National Award in recognition of their architectural excellence, which will be announced on Thursday, July 11. The shortlist for the coveted and ultimate RIBA Stirling Prize for the best building of the year in the UK will be drawn from the RIBA National Award-winning projects later in the year.

Congratulations to John Weaver's Site team, which included Contracts Director Nathan Davies, Site Managers Adrian Thomas and Neal Griffiths, Commercial Manager Gary Matthews and our supply chain and trades.

Article Copyright : Wales Online

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