Keepmoat scoops two accolades at North East RICS awards

Two developments that have transformed obsolete buildings into modern homes were highly praised at the North East Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Awards on Friday evening.

The schemes, which were both developed by national housing and regeneration specialist, Keepmoat, won one award and were highly commended in another.

Derwentside Homes’ Castle Court development in Annfield Plain, County Durham, which was regenerated from three unused buildings into 41 one and two-bed apartments, won the Residential category and was shortlisted in the Building Conservation category of the awards.

Meanwhile, Avondale House in Byker, which was developed on behalf of The Byker Community Trust (BCT) for ex-service men and women into 33 one-bed flats, one bed-sit and a three-bed house was shortlisted in the Regeneration category and the Community Benefit category where it won a highly commended award.

The RICS Awards showcase the talent of property professionals across the UK within property, construction and environment sectors.

Graham Scanlon, Business Development Director from Keepmoat, said:

“To win one award and be highly commended in another for two very different developments we have been involved in is fantastic news.

“Our aim is to create communities, not just buildings, we have worked in partnership with two outstanding organisations who have shown a desire and commitment to make things happen and deliver high quality homes for its customers and communities. These awards demonstrate that together we have delivered two high quality projects and are proud that they have been recognised by the RICS.”

The £3.71 million Castle Court development provides independent living for the over 55’s and boasts fully fitted bathrooms and kitchens, updated communal landscaped garden, a washing and drying area, modern wet rooms, a hairdressers room and an IT and cinema suite. The development also includes five two-bed bungalows.

Geraldine Kay, Chief Executive of Derwentside Homes said:

“Castle Court is a flagship conversion project which has not only transformed the local area but also breathed new life into three obsolete buildings into high quality, luxury apartments for older people.

“I am delighted that the scheme was not only shortlisted in two categories of the RICS Awards but won the Residential category award and I would like to congratulate everybody involved in the development for this magnificent achievement.”

Neil Graham, Head of Area at the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), said:

“The award for Castle Court reflects the quality of the development that our partners have completed. Derwentside Homes, working with Keepmoat to provide these 41 high quality new homes for older people, have made a real difference for local residents.”

Avondale House was developed from a former sheltered housing scheme into flats fitted with office space, a lounge and kitchen, a large communal garden and laundry facilities, which cost £900,000.

Jill Haley, Chief Executive of the Byker Community Trust (BCT), said:

“This development is revolutionary in terms of affordable housing for ex-servicemen and women to provide them with modern and comfortable surroundings.

“The BCT is committed and passionate about creating a community in which everyone living, visiting and working in Byker is proud of. To be recognised in the RICS awards is outstanding.”

The North East regional RICS Awards took place at the Civic Centre in Newcastle upon Tyne on Friday evening.

In addition to the success at the RICS awards, three of Keepmoat’s developments in the North East have also been recognised in the Considerate Constructors Scheme 2014 National Site Awards.

Keepmoat’s modernisation work on behalf of East Durham Homes received two bronze awards and they won a silver award for a carbon reduction scheme on behalf of client, Your Homes Newcastle.