IHBC Marsh Awards for 2022 (and #IHBC25) announced: ‘Retired’ to John Duncan (SC); ‘Learning’ shared by Leask Mackie & Jessica Burrows

Judges in the seventh year of the IHBC Marsh Charitable Trust Awards are delighted to announce the results of the 2022 Awards:

  • The winner of the ‘Community Contributions by a Retired Member of the IHBC Award’ is John Duncan (Scotland Branch), who will receive £500, the Award certificate and a free place at our next (blended) Annual School in Swansea in June 2023
  • Sharing the ‘Successful Learning in Heritage Skills Award’ for 2022 are Leask Mackie and Jessica Burrows, each receiving £250 and a certificate and a free place at our next (blended) Annual School in Swansea in June 2023.

The IHBC writes:

The judges were impressed with John Duncan’s exemplary work while in retirement, representing a wide variety of contributions, at different levels, and all with great effort.  Some of his contributions included as Trustee at the Highland Historic Buildings Trust (HHBT), Trustee at the Inverness City Heritage Trust (ICHT), member of the Inverness Architectural Association (IAA), and helping deliver conservation masterclasses at Inverness College (UHI).

John said ‘I am very honoured to have been recognised by IHBC and the Marsh Charitable Trust.’

… my interest and passion in the conservation of the built heritage has grown in the last forty or so years…

‘Although I graduated in architecture, urban design and town planning respectively, my interest and passion in the conservation of the built heritage has grown in the last forty or so years, firstly when I was appointed as conservation architect for the then Highland Regional Council (now Highland Council) in 1981. In 1983, I joined the then Association of Conservation Officers (ACO) and have remained a member of IHBC ever since. With the exception of a couple of issues, Context remains in my ‘library’!’

‘By way of ACO and IHBC, I was able to meet others who shared my interest and passion for the built heritage and to learn from them and from the annual conferences and various events organised within Scotland over the years. Since retiring, although maintaining an interest in IHBC through membership and continuing to receive Context, I have admittedly not attended national events. I have however assisted in organising local events by way of my membership of the Highlands and Islands Traditional Building Forum.’

‘Although I formally retired almost fourteen years ago, as a founding trustee in 1985 and latterly chair of the Highland Historic Buildings Trust , I have maintained my interest, admittedly finding it somewhat more challenging than full time employment as a conservation architect, particularly in sourcing funding for the fewer projects undertaken by the Trust these days.’

‘On a personal front, I own a listed bothy  which I am in the process of restoring and converting into a holiday let. Due to its limited scale, a separate service building comprising a shower, toilet and store is required and is currently under construction. I could say I am now practising what I ‘preached’ during my twenty seven years with the Highland Council!’

Leask Mackie impressed the judges with his motivation and conscientiousness to learn the skills and competencies required through a variety of hands-on courses and training, exemplifying how to get it right in maintaining and repairing the range of listed buildings on his family’s farm.  He attended the lead welding and bossing course arranged as part of the Inverkeithing Heritage Regeneration programme, as well as lime pointing, The Surface Repair of Stone, and Traditional Masonry Repair courses at the Scottish Lime Centre Trust (SLCT).  He has also taken courses in slate roofing, retrofit, lime plastering, structural repair of historic buildings, sash and case window repair, gas, and tiling and plastering.

… I take the guardianship of the listed buildings in my care very seriously…

Leask said ‘I was delighted to be nominated by Fife Historic Buildings Trust for this award, and to be able to attend a lead skills course in Scotland last year, thanks to the Inverkeithing Heritage Regeneration project.  I take the guardianship of the listed buildings in my care very seriously, and it’s amazing that the work I put into looking after them is being recognised by the Marsh award. Thank you.’

Jessica Burrows impressed the judges with her use of emerging technologies applied in a novel way to the understanding of heritage-led regeneration efforts which appears to be a harbinger of things to come and demonstrates new digital skills utilised to enhance the historic built environment as well as local communities.  At Built Environment Forum Scotland (BEFS), she used newly acquired technical skills in QGIS to intersect data overlaying the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD) with Scotland’s Conservation Area boundaries, creating a new dataset enabling critical appraisal of recent heritage-led regeneration efforts in Scotland’s towns.

Jess said ‘I’m honoured by this joint award from the IHBC and the Marsh Charitable Trust. I’m delighted to be working in heritage-led regeneration since completing my studies, and I look forward to continuing to learn and develop my skills to benefit local communities and our built environment.’

It is hoped an in-person Awards Ceremony can be arranged later in 2022 or early 2023, with all winners able to receive recognition for their outstanding contributions.

For more on the IHBC Marsh Awards for Community Contribution (Retired Member) and Successful Learning in Heritage Skills see HERE

images: provided by John Duncan and Leask Mackie
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