CIOB: Restoration of Edinburgh ‘Mound’ wins British gold

Simon Byford from Kinross has been named Britain’s Construction Manager of the Year by the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) for the £17million refurbishment of HBOS’ headquarters building at The Mound in Edinburgh.

Simon, who is a project manager for Sir Robert McAlpine commented, “It was a daunting prospect to take what was a very fine historic building, undertake major intrusive surgery, and then restore it to its former glory. The opportunity to work on such a building happens rarely.

“I was extremely fortunate and proud to have worked with such a great team and have responsibility for delivering this magnificent project.”

The Mound is an ‘A’ listed building originally completed in 1806 and designed by gifted Edinburgh architect David Bryce. The building has served as HQ for the Bank of Scotland until 2001 when it became the corporate headquarters of HBOS, formed from the merger between Halifax and the Bank of Scotland. The Mound shares the skyline with Edinburgh Castle and enjoys iconic status within the heart of the city overlooking Princes Street.

Given the logistical issues around the sites topography and the building’s location in the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town, together with the legacy of sundry alteration works carried out over the years, the challenges facing Simon were considerable. HBOS’ principal priority was the efficient delivery of a refurbished building equipped to function as a 21st century corporate headquarters, whilst maintaining its architectural integrity, with a target re-opening date of mid-2006, 200 years after its original opening.

Chris Blythe CIOB chief executive said, “It wasn’t just Simon’s quiet assertiveness and complete control that brought this project through. It was also his innovative approach to technical problems that won the confidence of the client that extra budget, and programme, were needed to carry out the stunning internal transformation it sought in its iconic building. Simon now joins the industry’s elite – an outstanding group of construction managers who have previously won the title.”

The CIOB has been running CMYA for almost thirty years; it is the only industry event to celebrate the individual achievement and excellence of managers in construction, rather than the projects, processes or design.

The awards are widely recognised as a benchmark for the industry and the premier accolade for management in the built environment. To be held in such esteem requires a judging process of the highest standard. It takes thirty judges six months of meticulous site visits and interviews (including the nominee, client and contractors) before the overall winner can be decided upon. This year’s competition had almost 100 finalists and was held at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London.

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The Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) represents on behalf of the public the most diverse set of professionals in the construction industry.

The CIOB’s role is to:

Promote the importance of the built environment.
Lead the industry to create a sustainable future worldwide.
Encourage leadership potential.
Set the highest standards in quality, safety and qualification.
Create an industry where excellence prospers.

Further information is available by contacting Saul Townsend CIOB press and communications manager on 01344 630 766 –