FENLAND: Countdown begins to next Thursday's Building Design Awards

NEXT Thursday sees the final of this year s Fenland District Council and Cambs Times/Wisbech Standard Building Design Awards. And what a year it s been, with entries nearly 30 per cent up on last year s inaugural event and a host of prospective win

NEXT Thursday sees the final of this year's Fenland District Council and Cambs Times/Wisbech Standard Building Design Awards.

And what a year it's been, with entries nearly 30 per cent up on last year's inaugural event and a host of prospective winners ready to attend the gala evening to hear the results from this year's judging round.

Since the launch last autumn of this year's awards, there's been a steady stream of entries coming in from an assortment of people closely involved in helping Fenland to prosper.

From heritage awards to commercial awards and from simple extensions to new build homes, the entries have come in from all corners of Fenland.


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"It really has been a tremendous effort, not simply in getting the entries in but also in making sure the judging was scrupulous, fair and consistent," said editor John Elworthy.

Much of the success for this year's awards go, however, to Fenland Council's building control manager Nick Seaton who has borne the brunt of much of the behind the scenes work.

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"It's been a pleasure to once again to be associated with these awards," he said. "We really do hope they represent the best of Fenland - both in terms of what the applicants have designed and built but also in how the council has helped to get these projects off the ground."

Only in a handful of categories have no awards been made this year, but for those attending next week's presentation ceremony at the Boathouse Business Centre, Wisbech, they are already winners.

For each of the participants chosen to attend will, at the very least, receive highly commended certificates and there is also the tantalising prospect for one of the entries- that may not even be the winner of an individual category- to be chosen for representing the very best in overall design and quality.

That award is sponsored by the Cambs Times/Wisbech Standard and Mr Elworthy said they were looking at all aspects of all projects to find the winner.

"It's a scheme that needs to say - 'hey guys this is Fenland, and we're very proud of what's been achieved here'" he said. "We're leaving that award to the end so for one scheme it should prove to be a special moment."

But there are plenty of special moments in a full programme of awards including the announcement by Gary Garford, Fenland Council's Corporate Director and host for the awards, who will not know the winner of the community award until he opens the envelope on the night.

Four schemes - all from Wisbech area as it happens - have been short listed for the award and the votes are about to be counted. For this is an award determined, fairly and squarely, by readers of this newspaper and it's their vote that, on the night, will count.

A full round up of winners will appear on this paper's website shortly after next week's presentation evening, and in a forthcoming edition of both the Cambs Times and Wisbech Standard.

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