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Civic Trust Awards

Assessment Process


Regions have their own Assessment Teams who provide feedback, commenting on the aesthetics, design quality, accessibility, sustainability and community impact of the scheme(s) they visit.

All Assessors must provide feedback on each scheme visited, together with a recommendation as to whether a scheme is successful in its local context and therefore considered a Regional Finalist. 

Each assessment visit can take up to one hour per scheme and in some areas, due to the number of projects submitted, a number of visits can be completed by the assessment team in one day.

Assessment visits take place during September and October.

An Assessor Manual is provided to all Assessors prior to Assessment Visits taking place.

Assessor Teams

Each Assessor Team can comprise of up to 4 people. Which can include 

  • Architect Assessor
  • Universal Design Assessor
  • Local Community Assessor
  • Local Authority Representative
  • Student Representative

The Process

The Civic Trust Awards receive entries from applicants via the CTA Online application system which opens at the beginning of June and closes at the end of July each year.

The Awards Team will contact Assessors on the database with the list of projects to be visited around the country and ask if they wish to be involved that year and to confirm which Assessment Team they would like to join.

Assessors will then be assigned to Teams based on location and asked to liaise with other Team members to confirm a mutually convenient date when they are able to undertake the Assessment Visits.

The Awards Team will then notify the applicant of the date and time of the Assessment Visit and ask them to provide access arrangements, security details etc

Assessors should allow for 1 full day of Assessment Visits and additional time to complete online feedback reports afterwards.

Once this is confirmed, Assessors will be given access to the Online Assessment Centre to view application materials and supporting documents prior to visits taking place.

Should the applicant not be able to accommodate the visit on the date/time specified, the project will be referred directly to the National Judging Panel for a desk assessment, or can be deferred until the following year.

The on-site assessment of each project should take no longer than 1 hour, unless the scheme is a Large/Multi Use entry. If this is the case, the Awards Team will provide additional time to undertake the visit.

The Assessment Visits will be planned to take place in a logical order in order to minimise travel and disruption to the Assessor Team members. 

On The Day

If access provision is needed, Assessors will be met onsite, by a member of staff from the project. Details of access provision, point of contact details and location to arrive at will be provided to Assessors on the Online Assessment Centre.

Should Assessors need to be accompanied during the visit for access or security purposes, this is acceptable. However this should be provided by a member of staff onsite and NOT the applicant or architect involved in the project to ensure complete impartiality. As judging is blind, we do not require Assessors to have a presentation of the scheme by the applicant/architect as they have access to all application materials online.

Direct technical questions/design decisions should not be put to the person meeting you at the project to provide access. This person is unlikely to have knowledge of design decisions taken. However asking them about general day-to-day use of the scheme is acceptable. Any technical questions or additional information that is not contained within the application materials submitted by the applicant should be emailed to the Awards Team before or after the visit, who will then request this from the applicant.

Projects which are publicly accessible, eg landscaping, public realm bridges etc. are generally accessed unaccompanied.

On completion of the Assessment Visits, all members of the Assessment Team must complete their feedback reports online via the Online Assessment Centre.

Upholding Standards

Assessors should agree that after a scheme(s) are visited, they are either a Regional Finalist or Unsuccessful. Architect Assessors must add this recommendation to the Online Assessment Centre.

Regional Finalist - schemes which are of significant merit in their region, contributing to the quality and appearance of the built environment, whilst being sustainable, accessible, and providing a positive civic contribution.

Unsuccessful - schemes considered NOT to be of sufficient regional standard for the Civic Trust Awards.  This can also apply to projects that the assessors deem to be incomplete at the time of assessment or having been entered into the incorrect category.

The Assessment Deadline

All Assessment Visits need to be completed and Assessor feedback reports uploaded online for each scheme before the deadline provided by the Awards Team.

Assessment feedback should be uploaded to the Online Assessment Centre by all members of the Assessment Team individually.

What Happens Next

Following the Assessment Visits and completion of feedback, all projects entered will be reviewed by the Civic Trust Awards National Judging Panel including the feedback provided by Assessors online. This includes those projects that visiting Assessors deem to be unsuccessful. 

The National Judging Panel may decide to promote projects originally deemed “Unsuccessful” by visiting Assessment Teams and consider them for national recognition along with other “Regional Finalists”.

This is to ensure consistency of regional standard around the UK and due to the calibre of some projects considered to be of “Regional Finalist” standard in some regions that are not of the standard of other projects deemed “Unsuccessful” in other regions.