Historic England Angel Awards ceremony 2017

It’s an honour to be here and up for an award, and it’s not just for me. It’s for all the effort that other people put in as well. I think the nerves have kicked in. I felt it as I was walking along, suddenly the kind of – Ooooh! Yeah, it’s the realisation of it happening finally. So excited! Yeah, it’s really great to be surrounded by such incredible people as well. Extremely nervous, and a little bit sick! We’ve got no expectations at all. This is sort of a bonus on top, so yeah, if it comes through and we win then it’s gonna feel really good I think! Just to be here is enough. We’re all winners tonight, aren’t we? Yes we are. Good evening everyone and welcome to the Angel Awards. This evening we celebrate some incredible achievements and amazing heritage rescues. It is just, as ever, a pure pleasure to be involved in these awards, and this year’s projects are all genuinely exciting. So let’s kick off this evening with the Best Rescue, Recording or Interpretation category. All those who are restoring and maintaining ancient buildings, I have a great admiration for them, whether they’re professionals or amateurs. So it’s an enormous pleasure to announce the winner, who is Nigel Ford for the Norfolk Milestones. We just wanted to say thank you to you because you so inspired those children who then got to touch that stone and paint it. That must have been a brilliant moment. It was, yes, and we’re planning to do the same again, similar kind of things again. Our next award is Best Craftsperson or Apprentice. It’s the craftsmen who manage to bring it together, and particularly the apprentices who are going to be the future. As you can imagine I’ve been lucky enough to see many wonderful buildings over the years, but actually the best part of the job is meeting inspirational people, and for me that is summed up in this category. The winner is Kenny Brunskill. You were in the army before. Coming back from Iraq to do this sort of work, you obviously bring teamwork. You’ve got to work in a team, Discipline for the job, and the enjoyment of doing everything you do. This is the Best Rescue of a Historic Building, and it’s sponsored by Selectaglaze. We all care about heritage. That’s why we’re here, and that’s what we’re celebrating and Historic England absolutely salutes all who help us to champion heritage. I bring a message from the Heritage Minister, John Glen, who sadly can’t be here tonight. Congratulations to everybody. He’s a big, big supporter of heritage. We are very pleased to be sponsoring this award, and I was really impressed with the shortlist entries. Each has demonstrated really strong community support to find a sustainable, and a long-term use for buildings that had been part of their local history. For the first time ever with the Angel Awards, the judges couldn’t agree on an outright winner. They decided to crown just two as joint winners. First is Claire Slattery for the Piece Hall. And the second winner is Rich and Marc Moore for the Source Park. I’ve just got to ask you Claire – it looks so beautiful, I imagine there must have been some pretty grim times in the generation of that project. There were moments but we came through, and the building is just absolutely beautiful. I cannot imagine why anybody would not want to spend their life regenerating an eighteenth-century cloth hall! And well done you two. Fantastic! Hastings a place for skateboarding and roller skating and all of this. It’s been such a fantastic project to undertake, and there’s been a lot of people involved. Did something, one thing, trigger you to think that it could be used like this? We’ve been to so many contests and it was just the thought of looking down and imagining people cheering. Bravo! Now we go on to the Best Contribution by Young People, which I’ve said is an incredibly important category for us and I think it’s going to become an increasingly important category as the Awards go on. It’s so so important to ensure that young people are prepared to engage in an interactive way with the historic environment, in order that we have our histories for the future. Best Contribution by a Young Person is Beacon Hill Arts. Were there difficult moments when you were doing it, or did you enjoy the whole thing? It was a really straightforward and enjoyable experience. We’ve done film projects before but not in a historical manner I guess. It was really interesting to learn about new things. Now, our penultimate award this evening is the one voted by you. It is the People’s Favourite. This award is supported by The Telegraph, and the winner is chosen by Telegraph readers and by Historic England supporters. It’s been another fantastic year for the Historic England Angel Awards. What you haven’t seen is the 150 entries, or we would have been here rather a long time. but you’ve seen some fantastic finalists and I’m pleased to announce that the People’s Favourite is Rich and Marc Moore for The Source Park.

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