A major Devon landowner has been presented with the prestigious Client of the Year Award at this year’s Landscape Institute Awards, at a ceremony hosted by bestselling author Bill Bryson.
Clinton Devon Estates, who own and manage 25,000 acres across Devon, were recognised for excellence in working with and respecting landscape architecture in their developments. They were nominated for the award by the landscape architecture team LHC Architecture + Urbanism, who have worked with the Estate for over a decade.
The award is an endorsement of the Estate’s efforts to create a sustainable future for the environment and local communities, and is recognition of the architects’ expertise in realising the landowner’s vision.
Clinton Devon Estates and LHC share the view that sustainable communities have their roots in the past but look to the future, and should sit naturally with the history and landscape of their locations.
The stand-out schemes cited in the nomination included the Estate’s forthcoming Plumb Park development on the outskirts of Exmouth, Devon’s biggest town. LHC were appointed to develop a concept design that responded to the landscape setting, retained and enhanced key landscape features and biodiversity, and would provide 350 new homes with 25% affordable dwellings for local people. Plumb Park will feature an orchard, allotments and parkland, with the iconic Donkey Hill forming the green heart of the development.
The multi-award winning development at Greenway Lane, Budleigh Salterton also featured in the application. This project entailed architects moving and extending the provision of existing allotments to accommodate 48 brand new homes within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Both projects are examples of Clinton Devon Estate’s legacy schemes, demonstrating the Estate’s ethos of ‘handing over something more valuable than we have today’, and form part of the Estate’s strategy of wider responsible stewardship and countryside management, showcasing how landscape led masterplanning can create both sustainable and high-quality development.
The Client of the Year Award recognises clients who demonstrably support the work of landscape architects.
Clinton Devon Estates have always appointed and engaged with the landscape architect and design team right from project inception, working with the designers to develop a clear vision, engaging with the local community and stakeholders and investing in high-quality design and development.
LHC also designed Clinton Devon Estate’s headquarters, which is set amid Grade 1 registered parkland at Bicton Arena. The Rolle Estate Office was a collaboration between LHC’s landscape and architectural teams, resulting in a sensitive modern intervention that repaired and reinstated the Western Outer Park and its distinctive 19th Century parkland landscape, while delivering a sustainable new headquarters for the Estate that embodied their rigorous sustainable principles, used local materials and responded to the historic landscape setting.
A team from Clinton Devon Estates and LHC Architecture + Urbanism accepted the Client of the Year Award at a lunchtime ceremony at The Brewery in London.
Leigh Rix, Head of Property and Land for Clinton Devon Estates, said:
We are committed to our ethos of providing sustainable landscape management, in keeping with our precious surrounding environment, and the award is recognition of our values and efforts. It is a fantastic endorsement and one we are all very proud of. It is recognition, also, of the competence and integrity of the consultants at LHC who have developed design-led, high quality, sustainable developments that help the Estate deliver its vision.
The Landscape Institute Awards recognise the outstanding work of LI members, promote excellence in practice, and raise the profile of the profession. Each year, the awards ceremony celebrates projects that protect, conserve and enhance the natural and built environment; and that demonstrate the highest levels of innovation, skill, and commitment to values such as green infrastructure, health and well-being, and natural capital.