Sheffield Design Award Winners building visits

The Long Barn – Conservation Award winner (Chiles, Evans and Care)

Over the coming months, the Sheffield Society of Architects has arranged a selection of building visits to some of the winners from the 2018 Sheffield Design Awards. Promoting design excellence across the City Region, the planned visits include:

June:

The Long Barn  – Conservation Award winner (Chiles, Evans and Care)

July:

National College for High Speed Rail – Large Project Award winner (Bond Bryan Architects)

Dam View – Residential Award winner (Robin Ashley Architects)

August: 

Leavygreave Plantables – Open Space Award winner (Grant Associates & David Appleyard)

October:

The Glassworks – Residential Award highly commended  (CODA)

These projects showcase the variety of areas which the Sheffield Design Awards cover, including the residential, education and public realm sectors.

Not only do the visits include significant projects from well-known national architects such as the National College for High Speed Rail, designed by Bond Bryan Architects, they also incorporate entrants from much smaller practices such as The Long Barn by Chiles, Evans and Care, which reflects the scope of projects which are being constructed in the region, and the diversity of design.

To find out more about the forthcoming visits, please follow @RIBA_SSA and book your place. For more information on the Design Awards please follow @SHFdesignawards


National College for High Speed Rail, Bond Bryan Architects – Large Project Award winner

Endcliffe Park US Air Force fly-past scheduled

UPDATE: BBC Breakfast will be filming in Endcliffe Park from 6am, and there will be a memorial service in the park starting at 8am.
The flypast is scheduled to start at 8:45am, weather permitting.
Further details can be found here: https://sheffieldnewsroom.co.uk/news/mi_amigo_flypast/

He has shouldered responsibility for the crash for 75 years, as the plane was trying to avoid crashing into him and other children in the park. He has visited and maintained the memorial every day since it was erected, telling them how much he loves them and is forever grateful to those who saved his life.

War Memorial in Endcliffe Park to crew of U.S.A.A.F. bomber which crashed in 1944

Dan Walker, BBC Breakfast presenter, saw Tony planting new flowers at the memorial and uncovered his story. Dan then began a campaign to get a fly-past for Tony.

The US Ambassador has confirmed that a fly-by will take place on 22nd February, 75 years to the day, to commemorate the event, in Endcliffe Park. Further details are due to be announced shortly.

Sheffield Design Awards 2018

The Sheffield Design Awards culminated with the fantastically attended Awards Ceremony, held last night at the Trafalgar Warehouse.

A record number of entries was reduced to a shortlist of 16 which was visited by the judging panel. Fittingly, the Editor of Sheffield Newspapers, Nancy Fielder was our compere for the evening, and their support continues with excellent coverage of the event.

The refurbishment and extension of Albert Works (pictured), home to marketing agency Jaywing, by Cartwright Pickard Architects, scooped the Overall Award, as well as the Large Project Award.

Our Patron, the Master Cutler represented by the immediate past Master, Ken Cooke presented a new Award, Lifetime Achievement for a Building in Use, to the Peace Gardens on the eve of their 20th anniversary

Leavygreave Plantables by Artist David Appleyard.
Leavygreave Plantables by Artist David Appleyard, Keith Hayman Award winner 2018

Winners in full:

Outstanding Project: Albert Works, Cartwright Pickard
People’s Choice: Chatsworth Bird Hide, Peak Architects
Lifetime Achievement of ‘Building’ In-Use: Peace Gardens, SCC
Open Space: Plantables, University of Sheffield & David Appleyard
Conservation: The Long Barn, CECA
Residential: Dam View, Robin Ashley Architects
Large Project: Albert Works, Cartwright Pickard
Medium Project: Site Gallery, DRDH
Small Project: Public Bar, Melling Ridgeway & Partners
Keith Hayman Award for Public Art: Plantables, University of Sheffield & David Appleyard

Response to Heart of the City 2, Block B & C consultation

Sheffield Civic Trust Feedback
in response to the consultation on Sheffield’s Heart of the City 2, Block B & C

Sheffield Civic Trust (SCT) thanks Queensbury, Counter Context and the design team at Leonard Design, for presenting the current proposals for The Heart of the City 2 to the membership.
The Trust recognises how the briefing from Sheffield City Council has resulted in the retention of much loved heritage buildings, despite their non designated status. The City Council’s vision in acting as client and driving the brief to the benefit of the city is welcomed.
SCT support the scheme especially on the following aspects;
– the horizontal mix of use i.e. retail at street level with apartments and offices at the upper levels
– access to upper floors with entrances from the street
– the block by block, phased approach outlined in the presentation
– the focus on a mix of uses that the current market is not supporting i.e. 2/3 bedroom apartments with quality external space rather than student housing.
– retention of the existing street pattern
– high-quality public space, that continues the approach taken throughout the city centre
– proposed historic façade retention.

Detailed design comments
Whilst the façade retention is welcomed, the gridded façade ‘folding’ into the existing pitched roof of the existing building (Laycock House) was considered awkward in some members’ minds. As this is a prominent corner, a more sensitive design solution should be considered.
The architectural treatment of corners of both blocks on to the new ‘5 ways’ are a great opportunity for the designers. Seven Dials in London’s Covent Garden was raised as a good precedent for the design. It was felt that the opportunity to mark this significant meeting of streets has been missed in the current design.
It was felt that the glazing proportions proposed within the new buildings should respect the order and hierarchy of the existing street facades more closely. Fenestration which denotes a top, middle and bottom may be more successful. The tendency towards expressing the top of the buildings in ‘zinc hats’ should be avoided, given their prevalence in speculative schemes over the last decade. The proposal for vertical stripes at the top of Laycock House currently give the appearance of cladding, similar to that used recently on a prominent car park in the city. Higher quality materials and detailing rather than the cladding shown are felt to be more appropriate. For instance the larger duplex units that top Block B could be
expressed whilst retaining the materials and architectural language of the rest of the block.
The servicing of the retail units from pedestrianised roads rather than a dedicated service yard is welcomed but will require careful management. This could ensure the strategy to reduce traffic congestion works, by encouraging workers to linger in the city centre after work.

Over view
The current approach of developing the Heart of the City 2 block by block has great potential for a rich and diverse mix of architecture uses and streets in the heart of our city. This richness is emerging in the
public realm, which looks both complex and exciting and is all about Sheffield.. The retention of historic facades will reinforce this diversity and local identity. However of concern is the emerging similarity in the building designs to date. The architectural expression of grids and cladding now emerging on the HSBC building is to be repeated on Blocks B&C. This reinforces the Trust’s belief that a more diverse range of designers should be employed to tie the scheme better to its context.
For future plots, we would welcome a commitment from SCC to promote more variation and design quality by committing to either design competitions or a diverse mix of designers/architects for each plot .
This approach was adopted at Liverpool One and has resulted in a wide range of architecture which enhances the experience of the city. Liverpool One avoids any uniformity or blandness in favour of a rich sequence of spaces and buildings which knit the development into the city – We do not want the blandness of Meadowhall transplanted into our city. We do want a more distinctive, new heart to our city that says ‘Sheffield!’
We hope that Sheffield City Council will consider supporting local suppliers in the awarding of the construction contracts, and proactively implement the Social Value Act, by considering inclusion of local labour clauses as appropriate when commissioning the development.
Whilst the aim for high quality city centre living with a range of types of dwelling is laudable, the City Council should have a long-term plan for a range of ownership, to avoid gentrification that precludes a fair and equitable city centre for its citizens.
We look forward to seeing the planning application in due course, and to engaging with the relevant parties as the Heart of the City 2 scheme goes forward.

Louise Watt
Chair Sheffield Civic Trust
on behalf of the Trustees.
October 2018

GREAT BRITISH SELL OFF AND COMMUNITY ASSET TRANSFER

In June this year Locality, which is the national membership charity of community organisations, launched Save our Spaces. This is a campaign to save buildings and spaces that have come to be seen as a maintenance liability to councils from being sold off into private ownership. Losing public buildings and green spaces to private enterprise is bound to deplete our social fabric – often involving shareholders and thus the private organisation’s duty to take profits out from that asset to pay their shareholder dividends.

An alternative already exists. Community Asset Transfer was set up in 2003, whereby councils may sell assets to community organisations at below market rates in exchange for demonstrable community benefit.

Community ownership is an alternative to private or public ownership. It involves a community organisation legally set up for the public benefit that makes an asset available to the whole community without private or public commercial gain.

While alarm about the Great British Sell-Off has been circulating for a few years, and despite community asset transfer being the third option, Locality has discovered that fewer than half Local Authorities have an asset transfer policy.

Sheffield City Council has set up The Community Right to Bid which is billed as giving ‘people of Sheffield the chance to bid, to buy and take over the running of assets that are considered of value to the local community which are being sold by the current owners’. A community needs to nominate and successfully have registered the asset (a Council process). Once this is completed, my understanding is that the owner cannot sell it for purposes outside the community benefit it brings – though they don’t have to sell it to that particular community group. So that when the owner wants to sell it, the scheme allows the community group six months to make an offer to buy the asset.

Clearly, this calls on active and co-operative citizenship. As the saying goes: ‘less talk, more do’.

SHEFFIELD WATERWAYS AND FLOOD PROTECTION STRATEGY

Members will be aware that the issue of schemes for the better protection of Sheffield from floods such as the devastating one of 2007 has been around for a while now. The initial proposals roused a lot of opposition from heritage and conservation groups. In particular, those proposals which related to the Rivers Loxley and Rivelin included hard works which were considered likely to impact adversely on aesthetic, wildlife, historical, architectural and archaeological features of those valleys. In some cases, doubt was in any event cast on their likely efficacy as well. A wide range of organisations raised objections including the SCT. All then went quiet when the Government refused to fund the proposals. Whilst the City Council had originally agreed to meetings with concerned individuals and groups, a meeting never happened. Now funding is apparently on the table for proposals which affect the Don catchment. (link)

This is thought to mean the Owlerton and Malin Bridge areas which were not the most contentious areas if they don’t extend beyond those points up the valleys themselves. However, the position at going to press is far from certain.

On behalf of the SCT, our trustee Jim Monach is keeping an eye on what might come forward to try to safeguard the quality of the environment in those sensitive areas.

THE RAYNSFORD REVIEW – NINE PROPOSITIONS FOR A NEW PLANNING SYSTEM

Those not directly connected with planning or the built environment may have missed the fact that a major review of the planning system has been underway. Headed by the Town and Country Planning Association,  Nick Raynsford (whose previous career includes being Director of Shelter, MP and Shadow Minister for Housing and Construction) has built this report following months of research and analysis. The Interim Report was published in May.  It makes fascinating reading. 

The executive summary gives you a taster:

If there is one striking conclusion to be drawn from the work of the Raynsford Review to date, it is that the current planning system in England does not work effectively in the long-term public  interest of communities or the nation. Putting this right requires a forensic examination of the current planning system and the many myths which surround it.

(Raynsford Review Interim Report V6, vii)

Nine propositions are made, the first being that planning should be in the public interest (which currently often doesn’t happen). The report recognises that reliance on market mechanisms has been unable to deliver ‘a wide range of public interest outcomes’. The second proposition is to fill the void of what the purpose of planning is by setting its definition in legislation:

The purpose of the planning system is to positively promote the spatial organisation of land in order to achieve long-term sustainable development. In the Planning Acts, ‘sustainable development’ means managing the use, development and protection of land, the built environment and natural resources in a way, or at a rate, which enables people and communities to provide for their social, economic and cultural well-being while sustaining the potential of future generations to meet their own needs.

The propositions continue with: a powerful, people-centred planning system; commitment to meeting people’s basic needs; simplified planning law; and alignment of infrastructure across agencies. Proposition 8 grapples with the need for ‘a fairer way to share land values’, to find a constructive way out from land speculation. It looks at three options, including ‘an element of betterment taxation, as part of capital gains tax, which should be directed towards regeneration in low-demand areas.’  Lastly, it recognises the essential element of planners themselves to be pulled up from their low morale, for them to culture imaginative, creative and visionary qualities ‘not to impose upon communities, but to inspire action by offering real options for the future of places’. To achieve this, it states, reform is needed for the education, ethics and professional development of planners. And finally this ‘requires a system, supported by necessary resources, that values high-quality and inclusive outcomes as much as it values speed of performance.’

You can read critique behind the lines – more importantly, you can read how to right these ills. That is, if only the government will adopt it.

SHEFFIELD DESIGN AWARDS 2018 – OPEN FOR ENTRIES

The biennial Sheffield Design Awards (SDA) held its 2018 launch at the Town Hall on 10th May. Master Cutler, Ken Cooke, gave a hearty and supportive speech to open the call for entries.

Now open for submissions by built environment professionals, the awards celebrate high design quality in buildings, open spaces and public art – those which make a substantial contribution to the local environment and encourage the preservation, development and improvement of features of historic or public interest within the Sheffield City Region.

Information on the SDAs, sponsorship opportunities and how to enter are at SheffieldDesignAwards.org
Schemes must be within the Sheffield City Region area and must have been completed between 1 st June 2015 and 1 st June 2018 to qualify for entry. The entry deadline is 27th June.
Winners will be lauded at the celebration event on Thursday 25th October at Trafalgar Warehouse in Sheffield city centre.

The 2018 Awards are currently sponsored by Sheffield City Council, Glazing Vision, Counter Context, DeltaLight, MSA, Tarmac, Taylor Maxwell, Tobermore, Quatro and Choriso.

For more details go to SheffieldDesignAwards.org and follow updates on Twitter @SHFdesignawards.


 

Launch of the 2018 Sheffield Design Awards

The Sheffield Civic Trust and Sheffield Society of Architects warmly invite you to the

Launch of the 2018 Sheffield Design Awards

to be held Thursday 10th May, 5.30pm at Sheffield Town Hall.

Register for your free ticket here

The launch will introduce the categories for this year’s awards, the entry and judging process, and give details of the awards ceremony, to be held in October. We are also pleased to announce the our

Guest Speaker – Rob Murfin, Chief Planning Officer of Sheffield City Council

We do hope that you will join us, beginning with a drinks reception at 5.30pm.

Sheffield Design Awards

The Sheffield Design Awards (SDAs) are a bi-annual event, with the awards ceremony to be held next in October 2018. The Sheffield Design Awards are a joint scheme of the Sheffield Civic Trust and the Sheffield Society of Architects and were established for the benefit of the public and City of Sheffield and its region, with the following objectives:

  1. To promote high standards of building and open spaces that have excellent architectural standards and make a substantial contribution to the local environment principally through the promotion of an Awards scheme.
  2. To educate and inform the local population in the qualities of good planning and architecture which respect the needs of the public, as well as the concerns of planners, developers and users of significant buildings and open spaces in the area of benefit.
  3. To encourage by publications, presentations and making awards the preservation, protection, development and improvement of features of historic or public interest in the area of benefit.

Awards are given to buildings and open spaces that have high architectural standards and make a substantial contribution to the local environment. The Awards are made after a shortlist of 12 nominated schemes is visited by a panel of invited judges and the Awards decided. The Award categories and winners in 2016 were:

  • Outstanding Project of the Year Award [Overall prize winner] Grey to Green
  • Conservation Award – 81 Slinn St. Walkley
  • Small Project Award – Foodhall
  • Contribution to Open Spaces Award – Grey to Green
  • Best Building Award – Blackburn Meadows
  • Housing / Residential Award – 81 Slinn St.
  • People’s Choice Award – Foodhall
  • Keith Hayman Award for cycling or public art – Women of Steel

Castlegate: Fairytale or Phoenix

Tuesday 20th March, saw the latest of the Sheffield Civic Trust public talks, with this one focusing on the future of the Castlegate area of Sheffield City Centre.

Over 70 people attended two illuminating and interesting presentations. The first from, Simon Ogden, Sheffield City Council’s Head of City Regeneration, on the latest progress of plans for the Castlegate area. The second was from Valerie Bayliss, of the Castlegate Preservation Trust and the Save Sheffield Old Town Hall campaign,  on the aspirations of the Castlegate Trust.

If you would like to see Simon’s presentation from the evening then please click HERE. Below are are summary of both presentations.

Harnessing the past for the future

Simon Ogden highlighted the draw of the Moor following the move of the market and other retail that had been located in the Castlegate area. Now the Castlegate area needs a new focus on what its function is. He rued the down-at-heel impression that visitors staying in hotels clustered there are currently experiencing.

 

He pointed to interesting elements of this area such as Victoria Quays Sheffield Canal Basin, so close, which as yet are still detached and segmented and by the old road layout, and which fail to fully attract the attention they deserve.

Not only is there potential to combine some cool canal heritage atmosphere with the sturdy Victorian and Edwardian heritage above the castle area, but also with proposals for the castle site. One exciting idea involves an elevated ramp above the castle site where people could watch archaeology happening. Current archaeological knowledge is largely reliant on the work of two amateur archaeologists working in the mid C20, Leslie Butcher and Albert Armstrong. The ambition is to undertake further archaeological investigations. You can find more details by clicking HERE.

There is  significant masonry under the ground of the castle site. Archaeological investigations will, in addition to adding knowledge, also tell us the story of Sheffield Castle, a narrative to engage both Sheffielders and visitors. 

Simon set out the aims of development for funding bids for the Castle site including:

  • Overcoming the failed Heritage Lottery Funding Bid for archaeological excavation, including a trench plan.
  • Uncovering the River Sheaf through the site and creation of a riverside  Pocket Park with improved River Stewardship.
  • Extending the Grey to Green Project along Castlegate and into the revamped Exchange Square area which can be reconfigured to work as event space. This is undergoing local consultation currently
  • Public involvement enhanced by ‘The Pier’ a raised viewing walkway over the site, to enable the public to view works from above. 

Of the wider Castlegate area Simon spoke of harnessing the past for the future and working with positive partnerships, such as the City Region Infrastructure Fund (SCRIF). Many of the old buildings are vacant or only occupied at ground floor level. These kinds of buildings could appeal to tech companies and creative industries who look for interesting office spaces. Certainly the plan is to bring new life to these old buildings as Sheffield Hallam University have done, making the old Post Office into the Sheffield Institute of Arts. And new life is under way with the conversion of the former toilets at Blonk St Bridge which will form the Two Rivers café; and Tamper cafés aim to create a Foodhall  in the area.  

The Old Town Hall

Valerie Bayliss’ talk was modulated and factual on a subject that is clearly close to her heart. It was all the more powerful for her measured delivery which remained in place even when she criticised the organisation of her fellow speaker, Sheffield City Council (SCC). Interested readers can go to the websites on the Old Town Hall: https://friendsofothsheffield.wordpress.com/ and  http://sheffieldoldtownhall.co.uk/

In brief, when the Courts, which had taken over the Old Town Hall when the current Town Hall was built to accommodate city government, Sheffield City Council sold it to central government.  In 1995 the Department for Environment sold it to G1 Properties. Since that time it has fallen into serious decay. Images of the building in various stages of dilapidation were shown, some from Urban Explorers since no one had legal access to the building. There is now serious water damage, floors have collapsed, walls have peeled. But these aren’t any walls and ceilings. These were once fine examples, as Valerie’s slides showed, of ornate architraves, intricate ironwork and wonderful oak panelling.

 

In 2007, when this Grade 2 listed building was placed into the UK’s top ten most endangered buildings, a group of seriously concerned citizens set up the Friends of the Old Town Hall. They have done a lot of work, working in partnership with Sheffield City Council, The Heritage Lottery Fund, the Architectural Heritage Fund, and local organisations.  

The task ahead is enormous. The cost of repair following a condition survey and viability assessment  is put at around £10 million. 

A reader may wonder why the council hasn’t used its Compulsory Purchase powers or emergency repairs notice. One might wonder how legislation hasn’t yet been amended by central government since this legislation requires that should a council be unsuccessful in  extracting corrective action from the delinquent owner(s), they must then themselves pay for the repairs themselves. Now  in 2018, after several years of this government’s budget pressures on local authorities, this is clearly not an option.

In recent weeks there was movement at the Old Town Hall. People unknown to the SCC arrived and entered the building, apparently to install further measures to secure the building. It is believed the owners have appointed an architect to look at the building for residential use which is surprising as the study commissioned by the Friends of the Old Town Hall found this not to be a viable option.