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CWO wins three Natural Stone Craft Awards

28 Sep 11 Specialist historic buildings contractor Cathedral Works Organisation Ltd (CWO) scooped three Natural Stone Craft Awards at a ceremony held by The Worshipful Company of Masons, at Mansion House, London.

The Masons Company presents its Craft awards every four years in recognition of the stonework involved in creating and maintaining the built heritage of London. This year, Chichester-based CWO won the categories for Restoration and Repair; large scale Monument Carving; and small scale Monument Carving, as well as receiving a commendation in the Stone Cladding category.

Meanwhile, Peter Ayling, site manager at CWO, received an individual commendation within the prestigious Project Craftsman of the Year category of the Duke of Gloucester Award, which was also presented at the ceremony.

The award for the Restoration and Repair category was won by the Buckingham Palace Quadrangle, East Elevation project, where CWO carried out works as principal contractor directed by Martin Ashley Architects. The project involved the restoration of the East Elevation constructed in the 1840s. Extensive research was required to match the stone in the project since the east is the only elevation in the quadrangle to use Caen stone. The project demanded the most careful restoration and repair techniques with the work undertaken described by the awards’ assessors as of an “exceedingly high standard”.

Meanwhile, the Monument, the free standing column in the City of London that commemorates the Great Fire of 1666, was the winning project for the large scale Monuments and Carving category. Repairs to the Monument are carried out approximately every hundred years. This latest 18-month conservation project involved cleaning and repairing the Monument’s stonework, re-gilding its famous golden urn and adding a new lightweight viewing cage and specialist stairwell lighting. All the restoration work was carried out by CWO as principal contractor under the direction of Julian Harrap Architects and Structural Engineers Hockley & Dawson. The assessors commented that the standard of workmanship is “very high” as is the careful replacement of detail.

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In addition, CWO also worked as the principal contractor on St Lawrence Jewry Memorial Fountain, the winning project for the small scale Monuments and Carving category. The fountain was originally erected in 1866 outside the Church of St Lawrence Jewry near Guildhall. The project involved restoring and re-locating the fountain to the east end of Carter Lane outside St Paul’s Cathedral in London, under the supervision of Freeland Rees Roberts Architects. The assessors attributed the project’s success to the cautious approach to what was required to be repaired or replaced. As a result the fountain retains: “the qualities of the original both in form and spirit.”

Finally, in the Stone Cladding category the Richard Green Modern Gallery project in New Bond Street received a commendation. Richard Green Galleries commissioned Adam Architecture to design a new gallery to house its Modern Art collection. The stone façade was recognized as being central to success of the project. CWO was therefore appointed as stonework contractor to manufacture and construct the façade on a very constricted site with very large units. The workmanship on the project was described by the assessors as “very good” and “well controlled”.

“To have been given the opportunity to work on such important historical buildings in London is a privilege in itself, the fact that the CWO team has won recognition for its work from The Worshipful Company of Masons, is a great achievement and we are all absolutely delighted,” said Bernard Burns, Managing Director of CWO.

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