Retail/Leisure Award

The restoration of Gibside Stables on the historic Gibside Estate has not only created jobs, but has provided educational facilities for the local community.

Winner: Gibside Stables, Gibside Estate, Burnopfield

From left: Rebekah Ashby presenting the award, Tony Walton, Donal O'Sullivan, Richard Elphick and presenter Ian Parker

The restoration of Gibside Stables on the historic Gibside Estate has not only created jobs, but has provided educational facilities for the local community.

The National Trust became owners of Gibside Estate following its compulsory purchase by Gateshead Borough Council in 1995. Waring and Netts architects was at the time instructed to undertake survey work on the estate and produce designs for the restoration and refurbishment of specific areas including the stables.

The buildings were to be converted into a warden's flat, education facility, exhibition space and residential facilities with workshop aimed at benefiting the long-term unemployed. Also to enable the local community to learn new skills.

It took two years for archaeologists to remove a mixture of junk interspersed with exquisite valuable chattels and features that were secreted about the building. One of the original stables was left in a state of disrepair. this highlighted the stark contrast after the work had been completed. One particularly challenging conservation issue was the modern intervention of all the servicing within the building including a sprinkler system to protect against fire and new lighting to meet modern standards. Some of the external stone walls were in very poor condition and had previously been blocked with concrete and propped up. Approximately 80% of existing walls were repointed using a lime mortar mix which matched the mix taken from various parts of the original building and analysed.

The building has successfully evolved to suit the commercial, social and environmental pressures that often come into play in the 21st Century, while the design approach was driven by the necessity for a sustainable future for the building.

The success of this restoration project was not only due to good conservation, but also robust and careful project management.

Waring and Netts led and co-ordinated the design team, including the quantity surveyor, structural, mechanical and electrical engineers, fire engineers and specialists.

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Winner

Winner: Gibside Stables
Architect: Waring and Netts
Developer: The National Trust
Contractor: Laing O'Rourke Northern

Runners Up

Runner Up: The Diamond Inn
Architect: Martin Young & Associates
Developer: Scottish and Newcastle UK
Contractor: Les Smith Contractors Ltd

Runner Up: City Quadrant
Architect: DLA Architects
Developer: AMCA Developments Ltd.
Contractor: Tolent Construction Ltd.

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