Community sports park supporting young people in Folkestone wins RIBA South East Awards ‘Building of the Year’ 2023Hollaway Architects F51 Skatepark Folkestone ©Huft

Opened in 2022, F51 Sports Park, the world’s first multi-storey skatepark has been a local success story and has now received national recognition for its contribution in inspiring young people.

Funded by local philanthropist Sir Roger De Haan, it provides a space for nurturing young people through sport on their own terms. 

Designed by Hollaway Studio, the award-winning London and Kent-based practice, F51 Sports Park won three Awards at the prestigious RIBA 2023 South East Awards: RIBA South East ‘Regional Award’; RIBA South East ‘Building of the Year’; and RIBA South East ‘Client of the Year’.

Hollaway Architects F51 Skatepark Folkestone ©Huft

RIBA President, Simon Allford, said: “Winning a RIBA Regional Award is a fantastic achievement. These projects, selected by a rigorous peer review process, represent the very best of the region’s new architecture. Inspiring buildings and spaces bring joy to all our lives, and this year’s award winners certainly fit that bill. Many congratulations to all.”

Describing it as an ‘adrenaline building’, Hollaway Studio’s design for F51, features three skateparks, climbing wall (the tallest in the South East of England), and boxing ring.

The landmark building appears as an imposing concrete beacon shrouded in mesh rising out of the Folkestone Creative Quarter and has transformed the landscape of Folkestone both architecturally and for the local community. 

Part of a major ongoing programme to regenerate the seaside town, F51, reflects Hollaway Studio’s ongoing commitment to placing community firmly at the very heart of its work.

F51’s design has already received a number of awards and was selected in The Guardian’s best architecture of 2022 where it was described as ‘immaculately crafted.’

By Ed

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