Bury’s Cupola House project in line for national award

Ben Whatling, of Seaman and Son Builders, holdsone of the regional awards with, fron the left,  Neil Honeyball, Richard Sill of West Suffolk Building Control Service, and Duncan Haydon.
Ben Whatling, of Seaman and Son Builders, holdsone of the regional awards with, fron the left, Neil Honeyball, Richard Sill of West Suffolk Building Control Service, and Duncan Haydon.

The project to raise Cupola House from the ashes is in the running for recognition at the national Local Authority Building Control (LABC) Awards.

The five-year project to rebuild the Grade I listed landmark in Bury St Edmunds after it was destroyed by fire, won two LABC East Anglia Building Excellence Awards in July and will go into the national finals which will be announced at Westminster Park Plaza on November 10.

A fireman looking down on the wreckage of Cupola House the day after the fire in June 2012

A fireman looking down on the wreckage of Cupola House the day after the fire in June 2012

In July, O Seaman and Son Builders were received the Best Local Builder Award and the project won the award for Best Commercial Building in East Anglia.

Following the fire in June 2012, Seamans took on the re-build project to a comprehensive design from architects Purcell, which balanced the desire to adopt traditional construction methods and retain the historic design while attempting to comply with modern safety standards.

West Suffolk building control officers attended the blaze then worked closely with Seamans to completion in 2017.

Richard Sill, the building control officer who undertook the majority of inspections, said:”It has been a pleasure working with Seamans Builders on such an iconic building of such importance to the local community.

“We met the challenges through an excellent working relationship and we’d like to thank and congratulate Seamans on a meticulous job, and in particular, site Manager Neil Honeyball for his tireless efforts in bringing the project to completion.”

Duncan Haydon of Seamans said: “This endorsement shows what management, craft and skill sets we have within our company, and as importantly, are available locally.”

Cllr Alaric Pugh, St Edmundsbury Borough Council Cabinet member for planning and growth, said: “Buildings need to be used to keep them alive and part of Bury St Edmunds attraction is the way the part its rich heritage plays in everyday life.

“Striking the balance between conservation and modern standards needs sensitivity and imagination, attributes that local company Seaman have used throughout this exacting project.”