The ‘Allerton’ shed building project on the Loddington Estate in Leicestershire and the extensive building works at the Holkham Estate in Norfolk were handed first and second prizes for Best Rural Construction Project at the inaugural awards, held at Stapleford Park in Leicestershire. The Allerton Project won the category, while Holkham was named runner-up.
At Loddington, building works involved the transformation of a redundant brick-built cattle shed into a carbon-neutral visitor, training and community centre using a wide range of innovative renewable materials, with the aim of increasing visitor and training capacity at the estate, run by the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust.
Runners-up The Holkham Estate showed a different string to its bow with a range of different construction projects showing commitment and respect for both the traditional and contemporary.
The estate’s redevelopment of a 50,000 square foot listed building was one of the projects which impressed judges, along with its commitment to renewable energy by saving 8786 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually through its 100 acre solar park. The panels produce enough power for more than 6000 homes but are well shielded so as to prevent visual impact on the North Norfolk countryside.
Meanwhile, extensive refurbishments on the estate’s property have been undertaken with the aim of allowing it to develop a non-farming income into the 21st century. London gilder Rupert Coke has overseen the restoration of the Green State Bedroom among other areas of the historic hall.