Weymouth’s seafront clock, an affordable housing scheme and renovations of old houses were all winners at this year’s town Civic Society design awards.

The top award went to the the restoration of a dilapidated Georgian building in Rodwell Road by developer Rob Cox, who specialises in listed buildings, and Weymouth architectural technologist Paul Dean. 

The building had been derelict for 15 years, had suffered a fire and at one point had squatters who stole both the stairs and fireplaces – not to mention rotting floors and collapsing ceilings.

Judges said they were delighted to see the building tastefully brought back to life describing the work as having been completed in a thorough way and with painstaking care.

Mr Cox paid tribute to builder Andy White who undertook the majority of the work but did not live to see it finished – dying in a tragic diving accident, half-way through the project.

“He was a well known local builder, really good and with an attention to detail,” said Mr Cox.

Other winners included the renovation of the Portland Outdoor Centre, a former hotel building, at Castletown; the restoration of the Weymouth Esplanade Jubilee Clock; the enhancements to the memorial garden at Mulberry Avenue, Portland; a former fisherman’s store converted to a small house at East Street, Fortuneswell and new homes at Princess Gardens, Alexandra Road, Weymouth within the Lodmoor Hill conservation area.

Weymouth mayor and housing brief holder Gill Taylor praised all of the schemes but said the Alexandra Road project, on the site of a former residential home, was a perfect example of providing good quality housing in an attractive way.

She praised the Civic Society for not only organising the awards but also running the Tudor House and the Nothe Fort: “It was one of the council’s better decisions to transfer it to them, they have done a sterling job,” she said.

Cllr Taylor also congratulated the Society for not awarding its ultimate accolade this year, a blue plaque, because judges felt nothing was quite up to the standard needed, one of only a handful of years since 1978 that the award has not been made.

The awards meeting, at the Nothe Fort, included a talk on traditional wooden boat building, including the construction of the first Portland Lerret for 40 years by Gail McGarva who started her career at the Boat Building School in Lyme Regis, at the age of 39. Her first boat was a replica herring boat, used on the Isle of Unst, Scotland’s most northerly island.