THE owners of the Hill House in Helensburgh have been named as winners of the ‘client of the year’ prize in a national architecture award - while the innovative ‘Box’ around the property has made it on to the shortlist for Scotland's building of the year.

The ‘Box’ features on a five-strong shortlist for the 2021 Andrew Doolan Best Building in Scotland Award, revealed by the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS) today (Thursday).

Designed by Carmody Groarke, the £3.2 million Box - the largest chainmail structure in the world - has kept Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s residential masterpiece safe from the elements since it was completed in the early summer of 2019, giving the National Trust for Scotland (NTS) time to consider how to tackle decades of water damage to the 1903 building and avoid irreversible destruction.

The RIAS awards panel said the NTS “showed considerable bravery in adopting a concept of enclosing this acclaimed building to preserve it, while keeping it open for visitors”.

The Box was named on the 14-strong RIAS Awards winners list earlier this month, with the judging panel praising its “radical approach to conservation”.

Also on the Doolan Award shortlist, which is named in memory of its founder and patron, Andy Doolan, who died in 2004, are: Aberdeen Art Gallery; Bayes Centre, Edinburgh; the Egg Shed, Ardrishaig; and sportscotland’s National Sports Training Centre, Inverclyde.

READ MORE: 1970s slides found on eBay give new insight into Hill House's history

Christina Gaiger, RIAS president, said: “Community, culture and innovation sit at the heart of the 2021 Doolan Award shortlist, with projects spread across Scotland and demonstrating the dynamism and responsiveness of Scottish architecture today.

“They showcase an exemplary approach to passive environmental control, a progressive design for deconstruction, the use of post-occupancy data to improve design, and placing end user and local community needs at the centre of the brief.

“Taking a step back, the awards act as a mark in time, with buildings likely commissioned several years ago showcasing carbon-conscious approaches.

“We should of course all stop to celebrate these exceptional buildings but at the same time consider those timeframes and the changes which need to be implemented now to deliver on our future carbon targets.

“Therefore, the celebration of these projects is also a call to action, and a reminder of the critical role that architects and the built environment play in tackling the climate emergency.”

The winner of the Doolan Award will be announced by the RIAS on November 30.