Winners, judges and editors of the award for 'architecture for the common good' gather in great early example of social housing
By a long-standing tradition that is now all of two years old, we hold a celebratory lunch for a selection of the winners, judges and editors involved in the RIBAJ MacEwen Award – which sets out to find and reward ‘architecture for the common good’. So this was the second time that we booked a table at the excellent Rochelle Canteen in a former school bike shed in the middle of that great early example of social housing, London County Council’s Boundary Street Estate. The lunch was kindly sponsored by BDP, a practice which, with its egalitarian roots, is a big supporter of the MacEwen.
This was a proper old-school lunch in which our MacEwen class of ’17 gathered from all over the country. The top three projects represented were the winning community centre The Point in Tadley, Hants by Ayre Chamberlain Gaunt; Sheffield Foodhall project by Louis Pohl, Samuel Atkinson and Jamie Wilde; and the Rochester Roundhouse by Newcastle University School of Architecture’s ‘Testing Ground’ live projects module headed by Professor Graham Farmer.
Joining us were some of our judges: planning consultant Kathy MacEwen (daughter of campaigners Malcolm and Anni MacEwen after whom the award is named), Tatiana von Preussen of vPPR Architects, Iain Tuckett of Coin Street Community Builders, and me. Thanks also to MacEwen judge Steve Tompkins of Haworth Tompkins. Representing the RIBAJ were my colleagues who visited the buildings: executive editor Eleanor Young and assistant editor Isabelle Priest. And BDP’s chairman Chris Harding made time to be there too.
It was, as you would hope, all very congenial and informative as those behind these urban, rural and small-town projects met up. Congratulations again to our winners, thanks again to our judges, to our photographer on the day Alexandra Kiss and event sponsor BDP. We’ll be doing this again.