Dezeen Magazine

Wood Awards

Final call for entries to Wood Awards 2017

Dezeen promotion: Dezeen readers are being given a special extension to this year's Wood Awards, which recognises outstanding timber architecture, furniture and product design from across the UK.

The Wood Awards: Excellence in British Architecture and Product Design is open to all architects and designers who have worked on a building or product made from wood in the last two years.

Buildings must be located in the UK to be eligible for the award, while furniture and products must either be designed or manufactured in the UK.

The competition is free to enter and entrants can submit multiple projects, with no restrictions to their scale or cost.

The official entry deadline to enter the awards is Friday 26 May. However, Dezeen readers have been granted an extension until 31 May, providing they begin the application process by 26 May.

Wood Awards
The Stihl Treetop Walkway by Glenn Howells Architects won the Commercial and Leisure category of the Wood Awards in 2016

Foster + Partners won last year's top prize, the Arnold Laver Gold Award, for its timber-framed Maggie's Centre for cancer care in Manchester.

Past recipients of the award, which was set up in 1971, include Niall McLaughlin Architects for its fishing hut in Hampshire and Adam Richards Architects for its renovation of the Ditchling Museum of Art + Craft in Sussex.

Wood Awards
Ansty Plum by Coppin Dockray won the Existing Building category of the awards in 2016

Max Fraser of Spotlight Press and Michael Morrison of Purcell will chair the Buildings, and Furniture and Product judging panels. A new member on the 16-strong panel this year is timber construction specialist, Andrew Waugh of Waugh Thistleton Architects.

"We are seeing the emergence of a new environmentally aware architecture – an architecture that is centred on the beauty of wooden construction – an age of timber architecture," said Waugh, who spoke to Dezeen about how timber construction is revolutionising the industry.

Wood Awards
Max Lamb's Planks Collection was one of two winners in the Production Made category in 2016

The furniture and product section of the competition will be divided into categories for bespoke, production made and student design. Two cash prizes of £1,000 and £500 will be awarded in the student category, which is open to anyone currently in education, as well as those who have left in the last 12 months.

Architectural projects are expected to be shortlisted in five categories: commercial and leisure, education and public sector, interiors, private and small projects. Further prizes for structural work or the renovation of an existing building can be awarded at the panel's discretion.

Wood Awards
Velo Chair by Jan Waterston was the People's Choice winner in the student category in 2016

Product and installation designer Sebastian Cox, who was giving a special prize for outstanding design in 2011, explained how the award helped his career develop: "The Wood Awards enabled me to meet interesting and important people within the industry at an early stage and was a confidence-boosting accolade on which to launch a whole collection of furniture," he said.

Wood Awards
Stanbrook Abbey by Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios was the prize-winner in the Education and Public Sector category last year

"More importantly, the awards reinforce the importance of working with timber and celebrate the creativity and innovation designers and architects, at all stages of their career, are applying to this material," Cox added.

The Wood Awards shortlist will be announced in July, and the judges will visit all shortlisted projects before announcing the winner during a ceremony at Carpenters' Hall in London on 21 November. Shortlisted projects will be shown during the London Design Festival in September.

Applications forms to enter this year's awards can be found on the Wood Awards website.

Awards sponsors: 

Arnold Laver sponsors the Arnold Laver Gold Award which is the project that the judges deem to be the best of all the winners. Major Sponsors of the Wood Awards 2017 are American Hardwood Export Council, Carpenters' Company and TRADA. Other sponsors include American Softwoods, Forestry Commission, Timber Trade Federation, Wood for Good and Furniture Makers’ Company.