1st birthday gift for The Workhouse Enniskillen from RICS Awards 2024

The Workhouse Enniskillen, a Hamilton Architects project delivered for Kriterion Conservation Architects a year ago today, has reached the finals of the RICS Awards 2024 in two categories – Heritage, and Revitalisation/Refurbishment.

The restoration project transformed the Grade B2 listed Victorian building, now part of Erne Campus, into a heritage centre and business hub. The workhouse was reopened to the public on 11th March 2023.

The ground floor offers a mixed-use exhibition, reminiscence, and display space. The first floor was revitalised into a state-of-the-art hub for business innovation and enterprise.

Opened on 1st December 1845, the surviving structure was all that remained of this particular workhouse, which was one of 160 in Ireland designed by architect George Wilkinson. Records show that during the Great Famine around 10,000 people passed through its doors.

The main workhouse was demolished in 1964, with the surviving entrance block becoming part of the old Erne Hospital. When the hospital closed 10 years ago, the building was identified as being at risk and in need of urgent repair.

The RICS judging process will continue until April with the Northern Ireland regional event planned for June. Winners of the NI finals go forward to compete at the RICS national finals in London in October.