We have been crowned winners in the Lord Mayor’s Design Awards

We’re delighted to be crowned winners of the Lord Mayor’s Design Awards in the Landscape category.

The regeneration of our medieval Cloister Garden to create an exciting al fresco dining and drinking space seen us win the Landscape and Outdoor Space award.

The Lord Mayor’s Design Awards, which have been running since 1994, and aim to encourage, promote and publicise the very best in architecture and environmental design and to improve the built environment. Awards are given to outstanding projects in the fields of architecture, planning, environmental, urban and landscape design.

Andy Hook, MD of Blackfriars Restaurant said: “Since taking over the restaurant at Blackfriars 13th-century former Dominican friary, I’ve witnessed numerous tourists walk through into the cloisters, take a quick look around and then promptly walk out. It’s a magical space but is sadly underutilised and often over-looked.

“It’s not that there’s anything wrong with the area. If you look at the photos from the 1980s after the renovations were first completed, you can see it was an attractive, little sunny square. But over the years it became tired, some of the trees outgrew their home and their canopies prevented the grass flourishing. What’s more, the two-foot step-up onto the muddy garth provided a physical and psychological barrier that prompted most visitors to about-turn.

“My hope was always to lower the garth to create a vibrant all-weather level-access space fit for licensed outdoor performance, markets and other community activities that would draw visitors in, increase their dwell time and provide a better explanation of the scheduled ancient monument’s unique history.

“As you would expect, the permissions required were arduous requiring detailed planning. As such, it was three years before the contractors started on site. Careful consideration were was given to the use of materials, drainage, lighting, seating and the remaining walnut tree to ensure the new space harmonises with the surrounding medieval buildings. The explanation boards were also rennovated and we are creating an online app to provide additional information and augmented-reality content.”

“We are thrilled and humbled to win such a prestigious award alongside all involved at Southern Green and JC Consulting.”


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