Two construction projects in the heart of the Grade II* listed Byker Estate were recognised at a construction awards dinner last Friday, June 10.
The iconic Byker Wall, which has just undergone a £9.7 million refurbishment to 628 flats and maisonettes including link blocks, was shortlisted in the Heritage category, which recognises the achievement of high standards in the repair, re-use and revitalisation of the region’s historic buildings, sites and places.
Also shortlisted in the Sustainability category was Chirton House, where judges recognised projects or organisations where the principles of sustainability have been fully embedded, particularly those that demonstrate creative and/or innovative thinking and leadership.
Now in their twelfth year, Constructing Excellence in the North East (CENE) awards celebrate everything the North East Built Environment has to be proud of. The awards are designed to showcase excellence and celebrate the achievements of organisations across the region.
Both schemes are owned and managed by the Byker Community Trust (BCT) housing association and attending the awards was Jill Haley, Chief Executive of the BCT. She said: “The CENE awards showcase the very best construction schemes the region has to offer so to be shortlisted in not one but two categories is a fantastic achievement for the BCT. To be recognised amongst some very high profile projects and organisations is credit to the excellent work that our Board, staff and tenants deliver to make Byker a great place to live and work.
“Since the BCT was established in July 2012, we have invested £22.5 million in the Estate and the Byker Wall and Chirton House are two great examples of how some of this investment has benefitted the local community and the residents that live here.”
A full external fabric overhaul has been successfully completed to the Byker Wall including the installation of a new roof & photovoltaics, new windows and doors, improvements to communal stairwells and entrances, a new digital aerial system, upgraded door entry and CCTV system and a repaint in line with the original Ralph Erskine colour scheme.
Meanwhile, Chirton House was transformed from a disused building in a popular part of the Estate, into 16 luxury one and two-bedroom high quality, apartments including two ground floor apartments that have been specifically adapted for wheelchair accessibility.
The awards were held at a glittering awards ceremony at the Newcastle Marriott Gosforth Park Hotel where thirteen awards were presented on the evening.