17 October 2014
The prestigious Everyman Theatre in Liverpool has won the RIBA Stirling prize trophy.
The theatre, whose alumni include Julie Walters, Bill Nighy, Bernard Hill, Jonathan Pryce, Pete Postlethwaite and Antony Sher - was completely rebuilt in Hope Street between 2011 and 2014.
Designed by architect Haworth Tompkins and built by Gilbert-Ash, the £13.3 million theatre beat off competition from The Shard in London, Manchester School of Art, the Saw Swee Hock Student Centre at the London School of Economics, the Library of Birmingham and the London Aquatics Centre at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford, London.
The Stirling Prize is awarded by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) for excellence in architecture. It was set up in 1996 and named after British architect Sir James Stirling.
Previous winners include Zaha Hadid for the Evelyn Grace Academy in London and the MAXXI - National Museum of the 21st Century Arts in Rome, and Foster and Partners for 30 St Mary Axe - also known as the Gherkin - in London.
Last year's winner was Astley Castle in Warwickshire, designed by Witherford Watson Mann Architects.
The Everyman Theatre, famed for its working-class-sensibility and groundbreaking work wit new talent, reopened earlier this year after the original theatre was pulled down and replaced.
The judges said that the site was 'exceptionally sustainable'.
"Not only did the construction re-use 90 per cent of the material from the old theatre, but all spaces are naturally ventilated including the auditorium with its 440 seats.
"Clever, out-of-sight concrete labyrinths supply and expel air whilst maintaining total acoustic isolation. It is one of the first naturally ventilated auditoria in the UK."
Everyman & Playhouse Artistic Director Gemma Bodinetz and executive director Deborah Aydon said that the site had "unparalleled accessibility for a theatre".
The winners of three other annual RIBA awards were also announced:
- Stormy Castle, Gower Peninsula, Wales, by Loyn & Co won the 2014 RIBA Manser Medal for the best new private home.
- House No 7, Isle of Tiree, Scotland, by Denizen Works, won the RIBA's 2014 Stephen Lawrence Prize. Set up in memory of Stephen Lawrence, who was setting out on the road to becoming an architect when he was murdered in 1993 and funded by the Marco Goldschmied Foundation, the prize rewards the best project with a construction budget of less than £1 million and is intended to encourage fresh talent working with smaller budgets.
- Manchester Metropolitan University won the 2014 RIBA Client of the Year. The award recognises the role good clients play in the delivery of fine architecture.