Excellence in the design and construction in concrete was clearly evident again at this year’s Irish Concrete Society’s Awards Evening, which took place on the 24th of March in the Clayton Hotel, Burlington Road, Dublin

This was the prestigious 36th Annual Awards Evening and the event is always one of the highlights in the construction industry’s calendar with some 340 of industry’s finest in attendance. The Awards recognise excellence in both design and construction in concrete and are adjudicated by a distinguished, independent jury of industry professionals. The main awards jury reviewed a total of twenty-seven projects nominated in three categories of main awards – Element, Infrastructure and Building. There were also eight projects nominated for the 6th International Award, which is sponsored by Enterprise Ireland. The winner of the annual Séan deCourcy Student Award and biennial Sculpture Award was also announced.

The Main Awards

The main awards jury consisted of Michael Browne of Collen Construction, Séan Harrington of

Séan Harrington Architects and Brian Kavanagh of Garland Consulting Engineers.

Element Category and Overall Winner: The Vaulted House, Dublin

Chosen from a total of 10 category entries and 27 entries for overall award.

Project team members for The Vaulted House, Dublin accepting their award from Jim Mansfield Chairman of the Society (L-R) Declan Darcy (Darcy Bros) Thomas Burke (Roadstone), Jim Mansfield, Grace Keeley (GKMP Architects), Paul Durkin (GKMP Architects), Michael Pike (GKMP Architects)

Jury Quote:

The terrazzo flooring in the existing building may have been the spark that set the client, designers and contractors down a road that delivered an exceptional building that has concrete features throughout. The client was brave and gave a complete vote of confidence to the design team and the contractor.

There are many architectural exposed concrete elements that could have been submitted, fair faced walls, columns, soffits, and beams; the dramatic board marked beams internally and externally; the extensive use on terrazzo on the floors and stairs. The concrete theme continued into the garden with a board marked concrete shed, planter boxes, barbeque and even an insitu concrete table. Even a concrete worktop and sink.

The vaulted concrete ceiling could well have been overpowering and cold. However, the attention to detail in the design and the craftwork and passion from the contractor have resulted in an exceptional feature in a very beautiful modern home.”

Project Client:              Private

Project Engineer:         David Maher & Associates

Project Architect:        GKMP Architects

Project Contractor:      Darcy Bros

Major Suppliers:          Gerry & Martin Brennan / PJ Ryan Terrazzo / Roadstone


Infrastructure Category Winner: Páirc Uí Chaoimh Stadium

Project team members for “Pairc Uf Chaoimh” accepting their award from Jim Mansfield Chairman of the Society (L-R) Ger Campion (Roadstone), Eamon Stack (Banagher Precast Concrete), Peter Deegan (Banagher Precast Concrete), Dave Cotter (John Sisk and Son), Bryan Roe (Scott Tallon Walker), Tony O’Dowd (P J Edwards), Jim Mansfield, Fiona Clancy (Roadstone), Sean Breen (Malachy Walsh and Partners), Seamus Kelly (Malachy Walsh and Partners), Eoghan Cremin (John Sisk and Son), Michael Barry (Roadstone)

Chosen from a total of 7 projects entered.

Jury Quote:

This is a project of scale and impact and it dominates the local area. The vertical concrete elements and the excellent precast cladding panels captured the panels attention. There is also the row after row of precast concrete all completed to a high standard. This concrete tiered infrastructure surrounding is a worthy winner.”


Project Client:              Cork County GAA Project Architect: Scott Tallon Walker

Project Engineer:         Malachy Walsh and Partners

Project Contractor:      John Sisk and Son

Major Supplier:            Banagher Precast Concrete / P J Edwards & Co Ltd / Roadstone


Building Category winner: Royal College of Surgeons, Dublin

Project team members for “Royal College of Surgeons, Dublin” accepting their award from Jim Mansfield, Chairman of the Society (L-R) David McKeown (Kilsaran), Paul Devine (OCSC), Paul Healy (OCSC), Maria Mulcahy (Henry J Lyons), Eddie Lyons (OCSC), Jim Mansfield, Colm Murray (Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland), Sara Mooligan (Henry J Lyons), Robert Salmon (Henry J Lyons), Michael Drury (Henry J Lyons

Chosen from a total of 10 entries

Jury Quote:

The project team have combined to deliver a spectacular building that is alive with learning. The concrete challenges demanded a collaborative approach which must have pushed the parties to their elastic limit at times. From the raking columns, the jumbo corbel transfers, the dramatic board marked free standing concrete walls, the challenges in the basement civil works, this project challenged practitioners in concrete on several fronts. The building that results is a

vibrant living centre of Education which highlights the concrete frame of the building in a very positive light.

This a landmark living building and excellent concrete work is at the heart of the project.”


Project Client:              Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland

Project Architect:        Henry J Lyons

Project Engineer:         OCSC

Project Contractor:      Bennett Construction

Major Suppliers:          Kilsaran / SMG Formwork


Winner of the 6th International Award Banagher Precast Concrete for “The Royal Mint, London”

(L-R) Peter Deegan (Banagher Precast Concrete), Jim Mansfield, Donal Byrne (Enterprise Ireland) Caroline Cavanagh (Banagher Precast Concrete)

An award that recognises Irish companies who export product or service off the island of Ireland. The Award reflects the growing emphasis on export for all in Irish construction and is sponsored by Enterprise Ireland. The Jury included Ed Hanlon, Engineer, Brian O’Rourke, Architect and Donal Byrne from Enterprise Ireland.

Chosen from a total of 8 entries.

Jury Quote:

The ambition demonstrated by this Irish company to complete the encapsulation of an existing busy rail line and free up the valuable airspace overhead for much needed inner city residential accommodation was impressive.

The entrant provided a full comprehensive design as well as the logistical expertise to manufacture and deliver multiple precast concrete units to this busy inner city site. The structural design life of 120 years, the capacity to withstand a train impact and the innovative design approach undertaken together with the collaborative research into the seismic capability of invisible connections was also impressive.”

Project Client: The Royal Mint, London

Irish Supplier: Banagher Precast Concrete


Sculpture Award

Held every two years this Award scheme enables the Society to acknowledge the work of sculptors who use concrete as a medium of expression.

The Jury consisted of Bob Quinn, Sculptor and James Martin, Architect

Winning Piece: Shards of Memory by Yvonne Casburn

(L-R) Yvonne Casburn (Sculptor), Jim Mansfield (Chairman of the Society)

Chosen from a total of 4 entries.

Jury Quote:

Shards of memory is, through the medium of concrete, a demonstration of the process of

architectural decay, and the layers of complexity associated with this deterioration

What impressed us was the unique and innovative way that we were now able to appreciate this medium. Though the process of crushing the concrete is random there is a beautiful symmetry and consistency when seen as a whole. That which should have the weight of an industrial product is now a delicate gossamer curtain.”

Sculptor name: Yvonne Casburn

Sculpture title: Shards of Memory

Séan deCourcy Student Award

(L-R) Stephen Conroy, (National University of Ireland, Galway), Jim Mansfield (Chairman of Society), Mrs Sheila DeCourcy (widow of Sean DeCourcy).

This is an annual award given to the best final year project on a concrete related topic from the engineering faculties of 3rd level colleges.

The award is named after the late Professor Séan deCourcy, an inspirational professor for many years at UCD, a former chairman of the Irish Concrete Society, an author and historian of note.

Winner: Steven Conroy, National University of Ireland, Galway

Project title: Smart materials – structural testing and analysis of ‘smart’ precast concrete slabs