Lighthouse has been crowned the winner of the South West Community Benefit category at the Royal Institution for Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Awards. The award was given for the work carried out during the centre’s major refurbishment project in 2015-16.

The RICS Awards showcase the most inspirational initiatives and developments in land, real estate, construction and infrastructure. They celebrate the achievements and successes of RICS professionals and their impact on local communities. Spanning eight individual categories, the awards are regarded as the premier property and construction awards in the country, celebrating the most innovative projects in the region.

The Community Benefit award recognises excellent achievement in providing a facility which directly benefits the local community and can illustrate its success through local feedback.

The £5.3m refurbishment of Lighthouse was planned in two phases and part-funded by grants from the Arts Council and Borough of Poole, with the remainder raised by the venue’s Love Lighthouse fundraising campaign.

RICS recognised that the integrated design team for Lighthouse led by Design Engine Architects made a series of strategic interventions which breathe new life into many of the key facilities of the arts complex, ensuring it has a bright future at the centre of the community.

The judges said: “This extensive project to refurbish an existing 1970s arts centre was driven by a desire to make Lighthouse more open to the local community whilst at the same time significantly enhancing the facilities for the performing artists. The wide range of educational projects and community activities undertaken following the completion of the project is testament to its huge success. The refurbishment has ensured that Lighthouse will enjoy a bright future at the heart of the local community.”

Elspeth McBain, Chief Executive for Lighthouse commented: I am absolutely delighted that Lighthouse has won this award. It recognises the importance of the venue to our community and celebrates the achievements of the whole team to ensure that the building and what we can now do in it continues to inspire and delight.”

The eight category winners will now progress to the grand final to be held in London in November.

Lighthouse has also been shortlisted for Civic Building of the Year in the SPACES Awards 2018. SPACES is a collaborative organisation for those in the building professions working in and for the public sector. The winner will be announced at the SPACES Annual Awards on Thursday 11 October, in Cambridge. The full shortlist can be viewed here

Published 22 May 2018