This year’s judging panel included Michael Plane, Hilarie McNae, Peter Hadfield, Jean Evans, Philip Harrison and Nick Clarke.
New Year Honours 2017.
Another year, another edition of our New Year Honours! This year saw a total of 36 nominations across our three categories, the Good, the Bad and the Ugly. As is usually the case the majority of the nominations were in the “Good” category although this year there were more nominations for community projects than for development projects.
Perhaps because of the relative lack of development nominations the judging panel awarded only two “Good” awards, in addition to the Chairman’s special award, this year rather than the usual four but it was felt strongly among the judges that only those projects and developments that were genuinely good rather than simply average but no better than to be expected should receive awards.
The winner of the Chairman’s special Award was the Notting Hoole project which the judges felt was an excellent example of a community based group that had really added to the already vibrant street scene in Hoole, resulting not only in recognition from our judging panel but also in the national Great British High Street awards.
The first of the two “Good” awards went to the flower displays in the City Centre this year which have been simply beautiful and are the work of Dave Richardson of the Council. Dave was able to attend our prize giving ceremony last month and we heard how he has tended the City’s parks and gardens for 40 years, a magnificent achievement which it was nice to be able to recognise.
The second “Good” award went to Scheme Global and Owen Ellis Architects who were responsible for the renovation of Geenbank Hall in Handbridge. The deterioration of Geenbank Hall appeared in our Bad category a few years ago so this was a particularly pleasing award to be able to give. The judges were in particular impressed with the new houses that have been built on the site. These are excellent examples of modern high quality design and construction.
Commendations went to SJ Bebbington Butchers in Westminster Park for their shop front, the Canal Heritage Trust for their draft canal conservation area policy, the owners of 81 and 83 Hoole Road for the sympathetic renovation of those properties including the reinstatement of bay windows and the renovation of 4 Georgian properties owned by the cathedral on Abbey Street.
The “Bad” awards went to the deterioration of the highly important St Olave’s church on Lower Bridge Street and the poor maintenance of the top floor of “Off the Wall”.
Finally the “Ugly” category consisted of the former sewer flushing tower on the A41 opposite the Cheshire Cat which is in graffiti strewn and in dire need of attention, the continuing presence of the scaffolding at the rear of “Tea on the Wall”, Rufus Court, the dark and chewing gum trodden entrance to Rosie’s nightclub on Northgate Row and the unsightly barriers alongside the canal the Northgate Cutting.
It was my great pleasure to chair the judging panel this year and I’d like to express my thanks to my fellow judges, Jean Evans, Hilarie McNae, Michael Plane, Peter Hadfield and Phillip Harrison for their diligence in reviewing the nominations and their well informed opinions during our deliberations. Thank you also to all those who nominated projects. Without your nominations, there would be no awards!