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Sustainability Award for Iona Abbey

Monday July 10 2023

The historic Iona Abbey has been recognised at the Argyll and Bute Sustainable Design Awards 2023, securing the ‘People’s Choice Award’ for its recent refurbishment.

The awards aim to showcase the best examples of sustainable architecture and design in the region. 

Since 1938, the Iona Community has offered a place of hospitality to pilgrims within the residential accommodation of Iona Abbey. The refurbishment , led by Wham Architecture and completed in 2020, involved upgrading the existing facilities and improving the energy efficiency and accessibility of the building. Sympathetic adaptations were made for wheelchair users as well as for those with visual and audio impairments, whilst safeguarding its original use for the future. 

Less than a kilometre away on the island, the community-owned and volunteer-run Iona Village Hall, was also recognised with design team led by WT Architecture securing the award in the Large Scale category. Both buildings demonstrate how sustainability and heritage can go hand in hand, creating spaces that are respectful of the past, responsive to the present, and resilient for the generations to come.  

Councillor Kieron Green, Policy Lead for Planning at Argyll & Bute Council, said: “As we work towards achieving net zero by 2045, I hope people will take inspiration from our winning entrants and create design solutions that not only complement the amazing Argyll and Bute landscape, but also meet the highest energy efficiency standards.”  

Torsten Haak, Iona Community Executive Director, said: “The next phase of our plans involves renovating the MacLeod Centre, with environmental and social sustainability absolutely at the heart of both the building and its future use – something which is critical to us as we consider the Climate Crisis, a moment of urgency for Earth.”  

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Anne Robertson - Tuesday, July 11th, 2023

“Always glad to hear good news about Iona. It holds a special place in my heart..and indeed, the hearts of all the family.”

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