Awards ceremony set to bring visitors to region

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AN estimated 800 visitors are expected to descend on South Yorkshire when the Magna Science and Adventure Centre announces a prestigious architecture prize.

The Royal Institute of British Architects Stirling Prize ceremony takes place on October 1.

The event will be broadcast as a special edition of BBC Two’s The Culture Show.

The prize is awarded to the architect whose building has made the greatest contribution to British architecture this year.

Magna won the prize in 2001, after Wilkinson Eyre architects transformed the redundant steelworks into the UK’s first science adventure centre. Ten years on Magna’s managing director Matthew Beck said he was delighted to be hosting the ceremony.

“This is very unique as it’s the first time the awards have been hosted in a Stirling Prize-winning venue,” he said.

“It will be a very special celebration and a great party, as well as an opportunity for Magna to showcase its new solar PV roof - the largest in the country, and its plans for a new Green Innovation Centre.”

Staff from the Sheffield Convention Bureau secured the event with their presence at International CONFEX 2010, held every March in London’s Earls Court.

Business tourism manager Gemma Bradshaw said it was ‘undeniably a great boost for Sheffield’.

The event is expected to benefit the area to the tune of £112,500 with visitors staying in the city’s hotels and eating out in restaurants.

Awards will be presented to 97 buildings in the UK and Europe including Sharrow Point in Sheffield.

The set of town houses on Cemetery Road were designed by award-winning architects Project Orange.

The shortlist for the ‘Building of The Year’ will be announced on July 21.