Mr David Booth (centre), chairman of Muir Group Housing Association, with his colleagues, receiving the ‘Chairman’s Special Award’ from David Evans (left).
All the Winners at the New Year Honours presentation on 12th February 2014.
At the end of 2013 members of Chester Civic Trust were invited to nominate something or someone for their eighth New Year Honours (also known as ‘the Good, the Bad and the Ugly’). This scheme aims to recognise the best of recent changes in the local environment and draws attention to those which fall short of the standards which Chester deserves. “We aim to encourage high standards of design and maintenance particularly in the public realm” said David Evans, Chairman of the Trust. “Buildings, shop fronts, lighting, open spaces, street furniture, play areas and people are all eligible. Despite the continued recession there were lots of entries in particular in the Good category and the Judges were impressed with the quality of the nominated schemes”.
A presentation lunch attended by Councillors, Cheshire West and Chester Council Officers, and many other Award winners was recently held at Bishop Lloyd’s Palace to congratulate all those involved. The Chairman’s Special Award was presented to Muir Group Housing Association for their refurbished office in Lightfoot Street. The Judges were impressed by what a difference this remodelling has made to a formerly dull and uninteresting building. Other awards went to the new crematorium at Blacon, Chester Blue Coat CE Primary School, The Church bar and restaurant and a new office at Woodhouse Farm, Aldford.
There were also a number of schemes which we considered worthy of commendation. These were the Portico Project an EU project to conserve and enhance towers and gateways around the City Walls, The Architect bar and restaurant, a community building on Aldford Common, the refurbished Edgar House Hotel and for the first time a website Mapping a Medieval City has received an award.
In the Bad section Trust members highlighted the continued closure of Prince Rupert’s Trench (between Liverpool Road and Parkgate Road) and the deterioration of Greenbank in Handbridge. In the Ugly category members thought that the new bus shelters at the Bus Exchange are of poor quality and drew attention to the rear yard of an empty building in Newgate Street which is a real eyesore when seen from the City Walls. The Trust hopes that by drawing attention to the Bad and Ugly that improvements can be made in 2014.
Chair of the Judging Panel