Harpenden Society Awards for developments completed in 2020

The Harpenden Society has been helping to maintain the Town's unique visual image for more than 40 years by recognising building, design & site developments of a high architectural standard that blend within the town much of which is a conservation area.

In fact the first ever award can still be seen on the wall of the now Brown's Hair Salon. In the late 70's was almost acquired by a developer to knock down and develop with new shops/bars. It was saved thanks to local opposition and the efforts of The Harpenden Society and its chairman Paul Usher.

A small committee of society members chaired by Penny Ayres assess the t nominations from Society members in the early Spring prior to the official announcements at the AGM in April.


  • Buildings or site developments completed in the year ending December 2020
  • Buildings or site developments that have architectural merit.
  • Buildings or site developments that contribute a benefit to the town's residents


  • The prestigious Harpenden Society Plaque
  • Certificates of Merit
  • Letters of Commendation

Hollybush accolade for Jarvis Homes

Jarvis Homes managing director Mike Peters receives the Harpenden Society Letter of Commendation from Society chairman Phil Waters, for the company’s Hollybush Mews housing development which, in the words of Awards chairman Penny Ayres (also pictured), ‘discreetly echoes the architectural styles of the nearby traditional houses in Hollybush Lane built before the Second World War.‘



The Harpenden Society’s prestigious annual Award Plaque for 2020 was presented to the Katherine Warington School on Tuesday 24th Aug 2021. In recognition of a magnificent development by the Kier construction group, for its innovative building design and its internal appointments featuring state-of-the-art educational technology, all set on the edge of open countryside.

As Harpenden’s fourth secondary school, KWS is a major asset for educating the young people of the town and surrounding area, with facilities benefitting the wider community.

Society chairman Phil Waters presented the award to head teacher Tony Smith. Representing Kier were senior project manager David Tomlin, KWS project manager Tanya Hammond and project architect Alison Shepherd. Also present were Harpenden Society Awards committee chairman Penny Ayres and her colleagues John Davis, John Lowe and Pauline Waddilove.

At the Society’s KWS Award presentation were (left to right) architect Alison Shepherd, head teacher Tony Smith, Society chairman Phil Waters, Society Awards chairman Penny Ayres and Kier senior project manager David Tomlin.




Leisure Centre wins Merit Award

A Harpenden Society ‘Certificate of Merit’ Award for noteworthy local developments completed in 2020 was presented last week (3 Dec 2021) to St Albans District Council for the Harpenden Leisure Centre in Rothamsted Park, which has greatly increased the range and extent of sports facilities available to people in the town. Anthony Rowlands, SADC’s lead councillor for the public realm received the Award from Society chairman Phil Waters.

Cllrs Anthony Rowlands and Robert Donald thanked the project team of council officers, contractor Willmott Dixon and operator 1Life for successfully delivering this challenging project and thanked too the previous administration for initiating the project and their current colleagues for supporting the project to its conclusion.

Phil Waters said 'The Society is delighted to make an Award to recognise the significant contribution that the completely rebuilt and updated Leisure Centre will make to the Harpenden community. The improved facilities are excellent and will be central to helping ensure the well-being of our community long into the future'.

Seen, front row, left to right, are: Peter Simpson, director of Space & Place, the architects responsible for the Leisure Centre design; Cllr Robert Donald, SADC commercial and development portfolio holder; Cllr Anthony Rowlands; Phil Waters; Society Awards secretary Penny Ayres; and Tony Marmo, SADC’s head commercial & development officer.