Entries for the 2024 York Design awards are now open!

 The Awards are free to enter due to the support of our kind sponsors.  The awards celebrate a wide range of properties including single and multiple dwelling residential developments, community and commercial buildings, and open space/public realm/landscape.

To learn more about how to enter or to submit your application, please click here

If you would like to keep up to date about the York Design Awards, please sign up to our e-newsletter

To become a sponsor of York Design Awards
please contact us; guy.hanson@york.gov.uk


The aim of the York Design Awards is to encourage and promote excellence in design and conservation, striving for the highest standards which will delight present and future generations. In 2023 our headline sponsors are Shepherd Group and its flagship business, modular building manufacturer Portakabin.

Our headline Sponsor is

Shepherd's Portakabin

Shepherd Group is one of the leading family-owned private businesses in the UK. It was founded in 1890 in York and its head office remains in the city.

The Group’s long history and success has been driven by passion, ambition, professionalism, innovation and outstanding customer service through manufacturing and distribution operations in the UK and Europe. Following a significant strategic restructure in 2015, Shepherd Group is purely focused on its flagship business, Portakabin, Europe’s market-leading modular building innovator.

Employing more than 1,750 people across seven European countries, Portakabin creates hospitals, schools, laboratories, universities and factories for every need. As the pioneers of modular construction, Portakabin can deliver permanent-quality buildings of any size, for sale or hire, to fulfil any application, up to 70% faster than using traditional construction, delivering on time and on budget.

Portakabin embodies the values of Shepherd Group and its family shareholders; Visionary Stewardship, Integrity & Respect and Pride in Quality.

Find out more here.

The awards also receive sponsorship from organisations incuding:

York Architectural Association

The RIBA York branch – York Architectural Association

Leeds Environmental Design Associates (LEDA)

Leeds Environmental Design Associates (LEDA) is a team of designers dedicated to creating great sustainable buildings that respect the environment and are a joy to use. Registered in 1997, the company is a multi-disciplinary co-operative of architects and building services engineers. Their aim is to deliver quality, efficient, integrated design solutions in tandem with specialist advice, feasibility strategies and low carbon consultancy. Ultimately they help clients address all aspects of sustainability: social; environmental and economic.

LEDA offers a range of architectural services in close collaboration with its building service engineering colleagues. The company works on projects large and small, extensions and refurbishments, residential, community and commercial. Where additional expertise is needed, LEDA has long established working relationships with other consultants who can assist, including quantity surveyors. Find out more.

O’Neill Associates

York based O’Neill Associates has been providing specialist advice on a wide range of planning, development and infrastructure issues for over thirty years.

With its team of experienced planners, the company has extensive knowledge of the planning system, both in terms of submitting and processing planning applications and making plans and strategies. The practice has a strong track record of achieving positive outcomes on a wide range of small and large scale development proposals. Find out more here.

York Conservation Trust

York Conservation Trust cares for many of York’s most historically significant buildings.  Originally established as Ings Property Company in 1945 by former Lord Mayor of York, Dr John Bowes Morrell and his brother Cuthbert, the organisation is now freehold custodian of 82 buildings including York Theatre Royal, De Grey Rooms, The Assembly Rooms, St Anthony’s Hall, The Herbert House & Lady Peckett’s Yard, Fairfax House, Ingram House and significant timber framed properties on Micklegate, Walmgate and Goodramgate.

Each building is occupied by commercial or residential tenants and rental income applied in full to programmes of conservation, maintenance, repair and repurposing.  In 1976 the organisation became a charitable company, formalising the original intentions of the founders.

York Civic Trust

York Civic Trust is a membership organisation, open to all who wish to protect and enhance York’s architectural and cultural heritage, to champion good design and to advance the high place which York holds amongst the cities of the world. The Trust values its independence, but seeks to work collaboratively with the City of York Council and other organisations. Find out more here.

And with support from...

The Churchill Hotel

The Churchill is a luxury hotel that combines English heritage with contemporary design in a central location set in the heart of the city. An ideal base for business, shopping or sightseeing.

Some of the best bedrooms in York with Dewsnaps modern British brasserie for some of the finest food in the city serving great Yorkshire produce prepared to the highest of standards.

The Wellington bar serves a fantastic collection of craft beers and world spirits or the bartenders’ favourite tipple

Intandem Communications

Intandem Communications is a leading PR, marketing, and communications agency supporting clients across Yorkshire and the UK, delivering innovative, joined-up strategies that generate outstanding results.

The team pride themselves on working creatively and collaboratively, acting as the ‘central cog’ to help forward-thinking organisations unpuzzle their communications.

With vast experience in the property sector and fantastic connections across York and North Yorkshire, the team are using their expertise to provide PR and social media support for the 2024 awards. Find out more here.

St Peter's School

Welcome to St Peter’s School, York, the fourth oldest school in the world and one of the country’s leading schools.

Life has never been so full of opportunities, with challenge and change ever-present and our aim is to develop confident, rounded young men and women who make the most of their abilities in preparation for a successful, fulfilled life.

An All-Round Education – Our academic results are outstanding but we believe that independent thinking and a love of learning are just as important as excellent grades. Here there is a real focus on developing intellectual curiosity in the classroom and beyond, with pupils and staff being members of a vibrant, learning community.

There is something for everyone at St Peter’s with high levels of participation offering opportunities for the specialist as well as the all-rounder. We offer a huge range of sporting, artistic and cultural opportunities because we want our pupils to establish interests that stay with them for life, as well as learn the skills that will make them stand out in a fast-changing world.

York St John University

York St John University is a high quality, friendly university with a campus based in the heart of York. The university strives to be exceptional in all it does and achieves, in doing so building an excellent reputation for its academic excellence, a strong community spirit and a magnificent campus. Its vision is to be the best of England’s small universities by being inclusive, innovative, transformative and ambitious with a strong sense of belonging.

United by Design

United by Design is an independent brand and design agency based in York. With an excellent track record for creating and nurturing brands, United by Design work with individuals and organisations across a range of sectors in the UK and overseas including architecture, housing, building and development.

Working in three key areas of brand strategy, brand identity and brand experience, United by Design’s team work closely with business owners, directors and senior leadership teams as well as marketing and communications specialists to deliver strategic and impactful design that helps navigate change and focusses on organisational success.

The company’s broad local and regional client base reflects its strong connections with the city’s business community. Managing Director, Owen Turner, along with his team, maintain an active role in initiatives that work towards making York an even more prosperous city. Find out more here.

York Explore Libraries

Explore York Libraries and Archives is a mutual benefit society with charitable status. The company, more commonly known as Explore, is made up of the libraries and archives services which were previously part of City of York Council. It is owned by its community members and staff, and is managed by a Chief Executive and representative Board.

The Press

A valued supporter of the York Design Awards from day one The Press is York’s longest established local news provider and it plays a vital role at the heart of the community. Based on Walmgate in the city centre, today The Press is printed by the Newsquest (York) Ltd, a subsidiary of the Newsquest Media Group, but its roots date back to 1882 when it launched as the Yorkshire Evening Press – a name it kept until the late 1990s.

The Press plays an active role through its “People’s Choice Award”. This enables the citizens of York to vote for their favourite building of the year, which can be done via the printed newspaper, their website and the annual public display held for a week in May/June. Read The Press at www.thepress.co.uk.

Ravage Productions

Ravage Productions provides commercial photography to businesses of all sizes and is owned and operated by Duncan Lomax. Duncan has photographed at some previous YDA launches, and also regularly photographs for RIBA Yorkshire and the RTPI. Being Official Photographer at York Minster means he is used to impressive buildings, but Duncan has also worked for architects, developers and planners, and recent work includes photographing two of last year’s YDA winners, and documenting the transformation of York’s most prestigious address – St Leonard’s Place. He’s keen to work with developers, planners, builders and architects, and will be photographing the YDA launch and awards. Find out more here


Established in York more than 25 years ago, Fulprint is an independent printing company with a wealth of printing knowledge and experience. A supporter of the York Design Awards in its early years and becoming a sponsor in 2014, Fulprint plays an active role in the community and it has implemented a number of initiatives to minimise the environmental impact of its operations. This includes powering its business with the help of 50 solar panels and sending most of its local deliveries by bike.

Fulprint offers a vast array of print options with an expert team skilled to guide clients through the whole process from enquiry, through design and production to delivery. Find out more here.

City of York Council

The City of York Council is a unitary local authority providing services to around 200,000 people in an area covering approximately 105 square miles. The council sets out its five priorities as “Create jobs and grow the economy; Get York moving; Build strong communities; Protect vulnerable people; Protect the environment”. A good quality designed environment is a key component to achieving many of these aims and the council fully supports the York Design Awards in promoting and celebrating these achievements. Find out more here.

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