The winners of the Wood Awards 2018 were announced at a ceremony held on the 20th November at Carpenters’ Hall, hosted by David Hopkins, Director of the Timber Trade Federation.
Storey’s Field Centre & Eddington Nursery by MUMA was awarded the Mears Group Gold Award, the winner of winners, as well as being the Commercial & Leisure category winner. Liveryman Stephen Corbett, chair of this year’s buildings judging panel, comments, “the best building rose to the top, for its winning combination of architectural merit, structural ingenuity and flawless execution.” The 100-place nursery is arranged around three sides of a landscaped courtyard. On the fourth side, is the civic-scaled community centre including a 180-seat main hall.
The Sultan Nazrin Shah Centre, winner of the Education & Public Sector category, houses a large lecture theatre, a student learning space, seminar rooms and a dance studio. Judge Ruth Slavid said, “This is a building of tremendous quality and atmosphere, where every detail has been thought through.” The architect was Niall McLaughlin Architects.
The winner of the Interiors category is Royal Academy of Music Theatre & New Recital Hall by Ian Ritchie Architects. The 309-seat cherry-lined Susie Sainsbury Theatre now forms the heart of the Academy. Above the Theatre, the European oak lined 100-seat Angela Burgess Recital Hall provides 230m of additional space for student rehearsal, public performance and recording.
The winner of the Private category is Old Shed New House by Tonkin Liu, a timber framed and clad home nestled within the landscape of North Yorkshire. Judge David Morley said that the project “seems perfectly suited to its owners: this building is simple and modest but also delicate and uplifting to visit.”
Look! Look! Look!, winner of the Small Project category, is a pavilion within a 18th century walled garden originally designed by Georgian landscape designer Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown. Designed by Studio Morison, the judges praised the project’s sense of fun.
The Structural Award winner is The Macallan Distillery & Visitor Experience. Judge Nathan Wheatley comments, “This unique roof unites architecture and engineering to create one of the UK’s largest timber structures in the UK, and is the crowning glory of the new distillery.” The architects were Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, the project was engineered by Arup.
Studio Weave’s Woodland Classrooms, Belvue School, a secondary school for students with moderate to severe learning difficulties and a range of other needs, was awarded the discretionary Judges’ Special Award.
The Bespoke winner is Cleft, a series of cabinets made from different Japanese tree species. Corinne Julius, head of the furniture & product judging panel, comments, “We were enchanted by Cleft’s doors: they make you want to examine the material and touch it.” Designer Peter Marigold, worked closely with Tadanori Tozawa of woodworking manufacturer Hinoki Kogei.
The judges felt that the 2018 Production winner, Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby’s Ballot Chair, represented a masterclass in what an exercise in simplicity should look like.
Within the Student Designer category there were two cash prizes; £1,000 for Winner and £500 for People’s Choice. Voting for the People’s Choice Award took place at the Wood Awards shortlist showcase at London Design Fair in September. The overall winner was Objekt Bord by Ellen Svenningsen from the Building Crafts College. The People’s Choice Award was Super Desk by Ben Smith, also from the Building Crafts College.
The 2018 buildings panel was led by three-time Gold Award winner Stephen Corbett of Green Oak Carpentry. The panel included Andrew Lawrence, Arup; Adam Richards, Adam Richards Architects; Kirsten Haggart, Waugh Thistleton Architects; Nathan Wheatley, engenuiti; David Morley, David Morley Architects; Jim Greaves, Hopkins; and architectural journalist Ruth Slavid.
The furniture and product panel was led by design critic, curator and journalist Corinne Julius. The panel included Oliver Stratford, editor of Disegno magazine; Russell Pinch of Pinch Design; Eleanor Lakelin, maker and winner of the 2017 Bespoke category; Katie Walker of Katie Walker Furniture; and Rod Wales of Wales & Wales.
As a not-for-profit competition, the Wood Awards can only happen with collaborative industry sponsorship.
Mears Group sponsored the Mears Group Gold Award which is the project that the judges deem to be the best of all the winners.
Major Sponsors were American Hardwood Export Council, Carpenters’ Company and TRADA.
Other Sponsors included American Softwoods, Arnold Laver, Forestry Commission, Timber Trade Federation, Wood for Good, Furniture Makers’ Company and London Design Fair.