Developments in Ipswich are beginning to look up, if The Ipswich Society
members' nominations for awards are a good pointer - eleven in 2000,
thirteen in 2001 and nineteen in 2002. With such
a goodly number of projects to hear described and to be shown on the screen,
it made for a fascinating
occasion, even though our six judges failed to find a nomination
worthy of our highest Award of Distinction. There were however four High
Commendations and three Commendations.
This is the Society's most important event of the year. Many regular
activities, such as studying and discussing planning applications, take
place behind the scenes. And, indeed, a great deal of "hidden" work goes
into setting up the Awards Scheme, done as usual by the Society's Awards
organiser, Russell Nunn. But the Annual Awards constitute the more public
presence of the Society. It was pleasing therefore that the new venue at
Suffolk College was so suitable, that our
former Chairman Chris Wiltshire returned to present and shrewdly comment on
the nominations, that John Norman had designed a computer programme of
slides operated beautifully smoothly - and that the College provided some
good food to round off the evening!
After our Chairman, Jack Chapman, had welcomed members and guests, the
Assistant Principal of Suffolk College, Peter Funnell, outlined the
College's achievements and future aims, the main one being to create a
university campus for Suffolk.
Chris Wiltshire's comments on all the nominated projects were partly based
on the opinions of the six judges but spiced with inimitable remarks of his
own. This is a sample of what was said:
Christchurch Square, Bolton Lane.
Good use of worthy old building with
welcome increase of housing in town centre. Involved a lot of new structural
Scholars Mews, Devereux Court, Bolton Lane.
New town houses behind the old
school. A place to enjoy living in. Windows flush to the brickwork create a
Mortimer's Restaurant, Duke Street/Fore Hamlet.
Respectful treatment of an
honest industrial building (electricity sub-station). Well chosen lettering
and painting. Clock restored.
Sir Bobby Robson statue, Portman Road.
Good representation. Not its final
resting place. The town hasn't sufficiently celebrated its famous people.
Coe's, 20-28 Norwich Road.
An impressive statement of confidence and intent.
Dramatic appearance although rather monolithic at the sides. (Photos below.)
Churchman's House, Portman Road.
This divided the judges. Does the new
superstructure sit well on this 1920s/30s building? A striking new
development, especially at night.
Northern Quays (Common Quay and Neptune Quay) paving scheme.
patterned paving for this important area. Seats pleasing, although somewhat
vandallsed already. Chains a good idea but they do collect rubbish.
Fore Street, Star Lane to Salthouse Street paving scheme.
improvement to what used to be one of our best streets. Some blocks cut in
awkward ways lead the eye astray.
New multi-storey car park at Ipswich Railway Station.
Good parking but not
as userfriendly as one would like. Not the ideal colour green.
New Piper's Vale Community Primary School.
A bold design which ought to be
inspirational to children and families. Architecturally a few awkward features.
Curve Bar, Civic Drive/Princes Street.
A tidy refurbishment; nothing
Peacock's Store, Eastgate, Carr Street.
Noted with interest.
NCP Car park, Tower Ramparts: new iron fences and arches.
Tidied up and
looks purposeful. Pleasant railings. Trees blown down in recent gale.
Ragged School, Waterworks Street : conversion into 16 flats.
gable facade lifted up and moved back. Big improvement but concrete tiles
and lots of tarmac car park.
New Skateboard Park, Stoke Bridge.
A creditable innovation. Well used.
Ipswich Town F C, new North and South Stands.
Good to keep stadium close to
town centre, but a disaster for the built environment. Did lighting gantries
need to be so prominent?
Nacton Road, highway improvement Ransomes Way to Maryon Road.
elsewhere - makes a more pleasant entry into town. Could cycle path have
been integrated more?
12-26 St Clement's Church Lane, conversion of warehouse and new building to
An improvement to street scene from run down warehouse. A lot of
uPVC at back.
Cawthorne, 80 St George's Street, new house.
Good use of very difficult
site. The front a little bland but back view has wealth of good details and
surfaces. (Photo below.)
The 2002 Awards:
The Mayor of Ipswich, Councillor Richard Risebrow, acting, as the Society's
President, then presented the following successful owners, designers and
contractors with their certificates.
HIGH COMMENDATION for Christchurch Square conversion of school to flats.
Client and Contractor: Nell Davies Ltd
Design: Wincer Kievenaar Partnership
and Abbotts Development and Design
HIGH COMMENDATION for Mortimer's Seafood Restaurant.
Client: Ken Ambler
Design: Mullins, Dowse and Partners
Contractors: W A Hills Ltd
HIGH COMMENDATION for paving scheme at Common and Neptune Quays
of England Development Agency and Ipswich Borough Council
Architects Ltd and Ipswich Borough Council
Contractor: Ipswich Borough
Council (Photo below.)
HIGH COMMENDATION for Piper's Vale Community Primary School.
Design: Suffolk County Council Contractor: Farrans (Construction) Ltd
COMMENDATION for Coe's Store new extension
Client: Coe's Design: Poole and
Contractor: Elliston, Steady and Hawes Ltd (Photo page 4.)
COMMENDATION for Nacton Road highway improvements
Client, Design and
Contractor: Ipswich Borough Council
COMMENDATION for new house, Cawthorne, 80 St George's Street
Design: Keith and Garry Johns
Contractor: V A Marriott Ltd (Photo
Chairman Jack Chapman thanked all concerned, we went into the next room for
some excellent refreshments, and everybody must have gone home having had an