Denbigh HWB, Smithfield Road, Denbigh

A good degree of civic pride is evident

· Credit: John Garon

John McCall Architects for Grwp Cynefin

Contract value: £1.9m

GIA: 1354m2

RSAW Client of the Year – Grŵp Cynefin, Denbigh HWB

There is a complex decision in creating a new building for counselling and support of young people: just how transparent and welcoming should it be, when privacy and respect are usually the first demand of the brief?

At youth enterprise centre HWB Denbigh, the set-back ground floor not only provides passive solar shading to the glazed public rooms, it also affords respect to those making the brave decision to sample what’s on offer. 

  • · Credit: John Garon
  • · Credit: John Garon
  • · Credit: John Garon

Six apartments provide support for young homeless people, along with communal training facilities. The efficient plan means it can all be managed by a small team, and yet it’s not difficult to see that there will be a strong community spirit here too. A good degree of civic pride is evident in a building that boldly announces itself onto Smithfield Road, while its copper cladding helps promote a clean new form at the entrance to the town, opposite the clifftop ruins of Denbigh Castle.

The architect was blessed with a demanding but passionate client who knew what she wanted and where she needed to rein in her ambitions due to budget. This worthy addition to Denbigh’s centre is largely down to her insistence.

See other winners in the RIBA Regional Awards 2015 – Wales