The 2002 Triennial Award for Excellence in Applied Tiling went to The mosaic murals at Thomas Coram Early Childhood Centre. There are two large mosaic murals in the Centre's reception area complemented by a series of mural vignettes. Glass mosaic is a notoriously difficult material to cut, especially into small pieces, so the cutting and fixing required great expertise. One of the large murals also incorporates tiles made from the handprints of children at the Centre . These were far thicker than the mosaics so their fixing called for particular care and skill. 'This was a superb job,' said the Judges 'and a pleasure to have seen'.
Building owner: Coram Family p,c
Architect: Monahan Blythen Architects m,c
Murals: Greenwich Mural Workshop c
Artist craftsman: Steve Lobb m,c
Though originally nominated for its brickwork, the judges made The 2002 Award for Excellence in Tile or Slate Roofing to the UCL Cruciform Building. The entire project was to convert a 19th century hospital, designed by Alfred Waterhouse, into a 21st century university facility. The roof slates and flax underlay were stripped from the building's four wings and central core, each with spires and ventilation flues. The original roof boarding was retained and replacement Vermont green slates laid in diminishing courses, with new decorative lead ridge vents. The Judges said 'This was clearly a challenging job, demanding - and receiving craftsmanship of the highest order as can be seen from the mitred and raking hips and valleys'. The remodelling and refurbishment of the entire Cruciform building was completed in around 18 months, a credit to all involved.
Building owner: University College London p,c
Architect: HLM Design Ltd m,c
Main contractor: of Jarvis Construction (UK) Ltd c
Roofing subcontractor: Stirling and Johnson Ltd c
Foreman roofing slater: Rafe Thomas m,c .
The 2002 Triennial Award for Excellence in Brickwork was the most hotly contested - it went to the Peabody Trust Development at Newington Green. Centrepiece of the scheme is a six-storey curved tower. Clad in a relatively economical brick, it displays exemplary control of gauge, plumb, level coursing and regular circular alignment. All the bricklayer's skill and experience is needed to achieve the sweet curves called for in any radial brickwork. Curved timber templates for the various radii and plumbing points around the circumference are needed in the total absence of the line and pins used in straight walling. 'The design was sophisticated and challenging' said the Judges ' and the end-product was delivered to an impressive standard - a worthy winner'.
Building owner: Peabody Trust p,c
Architect: Rivington Street Studio m,c
Main contractor: Walter Llewellyn and Sons Ltd c
Brickwork subcontractor: Phase Brickworks Ltd c
Foreman bricklayer: Fred Quinton m,c
In addition to selecting winners in the three categories, the Judges made a Special Award for Craftsmanship to the Tile Arches at Southwark Cathedral Millennium Project. They had found it hard to believe that each of the tile arches - two flat and nineteen curved - had been built in situ. Every joint scrupulously radiates to the geometrical striking point of the arch shape. The high degree of accuracy in the setting of each tile could only have been achieved by a skilfull and experienced bricklayer working with the aid of a fine string line secured at the striking point some two metres below with which to check the alignment of the tile while it was being tapped solidly into place.
Building owner: the Dean and Chapter of Southwark Cathedral p,c
Architect: Richard Griffiths Architects
Main contractor: Walter Lilly and Company
Brickwork subcontractor: FieldCrown Construction.
Craftsman bricklayer: Dennis Carter m,c
The next Triennial Awards, to be made in 2005, will be all the more successful if the number of nominations made by members of the Company matches, or even exceeds, those prompted by the allied trade bodies. If you spot a likely winner during the next two years don't assume that someone else will nominate it. Just ask me for a nomination form, fill in the details while they are fresh in your mind (and remember, each nomination must be accompanied by at least one photograph) and send it to me. It's never too early!
Andrew Stroud Chairman, Triennial Awards Committee