Published: 22/12/2017 14:20 - Updated: 22/12/2017 14:25

Nucleus building wins architectural awards


The Nucleus archive centre on ground adjoining Wick John O’Groats Airport.
The Nucleus archive centre on ground adjoining Wick John O’Groats Airport.


THE Nucleus building which opened in Wick at the start of this year has won two major architectural awards.

The £20 million building, designed by Reiach and Hall and home to the national archive for the civil nuclear industry, won Public Building of the Year and the Editor’s Choice of the Year awards in the inaugural Architects’ Journal Architecture of the Year Awards. The awards celebrate design excellence in UK architecture across 23 different categories.

The centre, on the northern outskirts of the town, was built by Morrison Construction whose managing director Donald Mclachlan picked up the award at the awards ceremony in London.

He said: “We are delighted at the recognition this wonderful facility has achieved on a national stage. Our highly-skilled teams work extremely hard to deliver excellent facilities to benefit the communities they are built in many years into the future.”

According to the judge, Nucleus is “an exceptional piece of architecture materially, aesthetically and functionally: it’s made well, looks stunning and fulfils, indeed, exceeds its brief – effectively re-imagining what an archive building can be in both form and function.”

The building, which opened in February, accommodates 30 million digital records of records from nuclear sites across the UK, including Dounreay, stretching back more than 70 years. It also houses the Caithness Archives, a wealth of lcoal archive material dating back to the 16th century.

Its storage area takes up 26 kilometres of shelving contained within six giant concrete pods with the building also including a large public area, reading room and community space.

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