A multi-million pound hub of activity in South Tyneside has won international recognition for its contribution to the community.
Hebburn Central scooped the Special Award for Community Impact and Engagement at the annual Civic Trust Awards held at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London.
The £13m facility in Hebburn, designed by FaulknerBrowns Architects on behalf of South Tyneside Council, opened last June.
It has a 25m swimming pool, sauna and steamroom, fitness suite, sports hall, dance studio, soft play area, library, learning centre, café and customer service centre.
The prestigious award is given to the scheme that has delivered the highest standards of design while meeting the needs of its community.
It has already proved a big hit with the public, with more than 45,000 visiting the facility in the first three months of its opening.
Tis is a fantastic accolade to be recognised this way in an international arena.Coun John Anglin
Coun John Anglin, lead member for regeneration and economy, said: “This is a fantastic accolade to be recognised in this way in an international arena.
“Hebburn Central is a hugely popular facility, which has had genuine community impact.
“Our aspirations for Hebburn are still very much alive and since this facility opened its doors, supermarket Aldi has confirmed its decision to invest in the town, proving that our vision to transform the town is still very much on track.”
This year’s Civic Trust Awards attracted 264 international entries, with Hebburn Central securing one of just five Special Awards dished out on the night.
The Civic Trust’s National Panel Chairman, Keith Williams, described Hebburn Central as having “enduring elegance and fine community facilities.”
Lee McLaughlin, a partner with FaulknerBrown’s, said: “To receive both a Civic Trust Award in addition to a Special Award for Community Impact and Engagement marks a hugely significant moment in the realisation of a new vision for Hebburn.
“Our approach was to make modern community facilities more accessible by dissolving boundaries, whether that was between the building and its users or between the building and the town centre.
“We are privileged to have worked so closely with South Tyneside Council and the wider community on this project.”