Northern Ireland winners 2021

Congratulations to the winners of the 2021 Northern Ireland Master Builder Awards ceremony, and to all those who were nominated for an award. Check out the full list of winners below and learn more about the projects and tradespeople chosen as award winners.

Apprentice Award - Luke Emery of Lowry Building & Civil Engineering Ltd (Northern Ireland)

The judges commended Luke for his enthusiasm to learn from all members of the Lowry Building & Civil Engineering team, and for undertaking additional learning to supplement his personal development through his NVQ Level 3 in Site Carpentry. He has shown a willingness and ability to adopt new technology as it emerges and has helped colleagues to do the same, demonstrating excellent team spirit. He also made a great impression on the judges with his “first-class” communication skills and his kind, approachable nature that makes him an asset to any team. Luke's colleague and joinery mentor commented: "It is a pleasure to teach a natural talent like Luke”.

Find out more about Lowry Building & Civil Engineering Ltd

Bathroom Project - Marlfield Joinery and Construction Ltd (Northern Ireland)

The judges hailed this bathroom renovation as an example of “fabulous workmanship”, displaying excellent attention to detail on the part of the builder which has resulted in “a high standard finish”. The judges also noted features such as the bespoke vanity sink unit and the whirlpool jacuzzi bath with overhead shower and acknowledged the significant preparation undertaken by Marlfield Joinery and Construction Ltd prior to starting the works. The team also developed an excellent working relationship with their client, who stated: “We love how functional the bathroom is which [means] our guests can also have that luxurious stay.”

Find out more about Marlfield Joinery and Construction Ltd

Building Company of the Year - Setanta Construction Ltd (Northern Ireland)

Setanta Construction are rightly proud of their achievements through 2019 and 2020, having won contracts for unique projects such as supplying off-site components to the Claridges Hotel Group, and expanding their team with 12 additional staff. They did this all through a pandemic while also expanding their business premises to overcome production capacity challenges. The judges recognised the business as one that has shown great strength by maintaining a large client base, excellent reviews and a strong financial footing even when under immense pressure. They were also impressed by the company’s commitment to employee training and wellbeing, which demonstrates a firm foundation for continued success.

Find out more about Setanta Construction Ltd, which is also an FMB Insurance customer. 

House Builder Award winner - Alskea Contracts Ltd (Northern Ireland)

Comprised of 15 traditionally constructed houses built in red brick with render panels, this infill development site by Alskea Contracts was described by the judges as “a first-class project”. Taking on the tricky process of implementing the site’s new water sanitation system and grappling with delays brought on by the pandemic, Alskea have delivered a beautiful selection of three and four-bed semi-detached and detached homes with driveways and both front and rear gardens. The streetscape aesthetic is pleasing and each of the homes has been built to a minimal carbon footprint representing a comprehensive, environmentally conscientious development any builder would be proud of.

Find out more about Alskea Contracts Ltd, which is also an FMB Insurance customer. 

Commercial or Public Sector Project - GP McManus (Northern Ireland)

Taking on a challenging brief to create a bespoke state-of-the-art studio spanning three floors, GP McManus impressed the judges by maintaining a professional, productive approach even as significant challenges emerged. The team addressed a draining problem by altering the building’s steel structure and locating elusive sanitation connections even when the original designer, Building Control, and NI Water could not. The end result is a modern, multifunctional venue now fit for public use and described by the judges as a “highly appealing and challenging conversion of an existing building, combining high quality craftsmanship with modern construction techniques.”

Find out more about GP McManus

Large Renovation Project - Alskea Contracts Ltd (Northern Ireland)

Alskea Contracts Ltd’s stunning transformation of this Listed but derelict church building - The Chapel of the Resurrection – into four fabulous bespoke apartments really caught the judges’ eye. Using traditional construction methods to restore the aged structure, the team have furnished the interior with modern technology to bring the property into the 21st century, without compromising the historic exterior aesthetic. The resurrected property now serves fittingly as a stunning centrepiece to a new residential development of 25 houses and is a testament to what can be achieved with a considered approach to large-scale renovation.

Find out more about Alskea Contracts Ltd, which is also an FMB Insurance customer. 

Kitchen Project - Marlfield Joinery and Construction Ltd (Northern Ireland)

Marlfield Joinery and Construction’s client needed a kitchen with plenty of space for food preparation and for socialising with friends and family. The team have delivered a wonderful open space, cast in beautiful contrasting colours that give a warm, welcoming feel. Dual undermounted stainless steel sinks blend seamlessly under the Silestone worktop, while upstands and matching splashbacks have been mounted behind the range cooker to complete a well-proportioned and equipped kitchen. The client was delighted with the result, stating: “We are very happy with the overall outcome and high standard of skill involved.”

Find out more about Marlfield Joinery and Construction Ltd

Medium Renovation Project - Alskea Contracts Ltd (Northern Ireland)

Alskea Contracts Ltd’s renovation of this beautiful Victorian terrace property sought to showcase its period features whilst adding a cool, contemporary edge. The judges commented on the “really clever use of space… high-quality finishes and transformation of interior” owing to the careful coordination of colours and materials. The team have effectively updated the home and replaced dark, narrow areas with an abundance of light and space, yielding a much more inviting appearance all-round. They won the approval of their client too, who stated: “They are impeccable builders who leave no mess behind them and create a top-class product at the end of the project.”

Find out more about Alskea Contracts Ltd, which is also an FMB Insurance customer.

Sustainability Award - M G Developments (NI) Ltd (Northern Ireland)

Made using a timber frame, larch and fibre cement cladding and a sedum roof, this eco-project by M G Developments (NI) Ltd satisfied the demanding requirements for Passivhaus certification and demonstrates exceptional attention to detail on the part of the builder. The judges highlighted the intense technical scrutiny the build needed to withstand to achieve the coveted standard and were also impressed by the wealth of bespoke materials and products used. They described the finished product as “excellent” and deemed it a wonderful family home and worthy winner of the award.

Find out more about M G Developments (NI) Ltd

Small Renovation Project - Philip McElhone Construction Ltd (Northern Ireland)

Philip McElhone Construction’s addition of a single-storey extension to this property has drastically improved the living space for their clients without compromising any of the original features. The judges noted how architectural aspects like the mouldings have been matched perfectly between old and new, and clever lighting used so as not to interfere with the comfort of close neighbours. Despite the terrible weather conditions that impacted the project, Philip McElhone remained committed to delivering for their client, who stated: “Communication with the team was excellent and we would have no reservations in recommending them”.

Find out more about Philip McElhone Construction Ltd

Tradesperson of the Year - Paul Collins of Marlfield Joinery and Construction Ltd (Northern Ireland)

Paul Collins was nominated by a self-described “high-maintenance” client who was delighted with his customer service, stating that “his management of the build from start to finish left nothing to be desired. The quality of the workmanship is evident.” He impressed the judges too, who consider him “a great advert for the industry as a whole” and noted his accuracy in keeping to project specifications, as well as his ability to make helpful suggestions on how to improve project plans and enhance the result for the client. Paul is summarised best by his client who describes him as “a perfectionist who takes real pride in his work.”

Find out more about Marlfield Joinery and Construction Ltd


Watch the ceremony

The 2021 Northern Ireland Master Builder Awards ceremony took place virtually at 7pm on 11 June, where the winners were announced. Catch up on the winner announcements and entertainment by watching the award ceremony on demand.

Thank you to our sponsor

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Thank you to Keystone Lintels for sponsoring the fun boxes for this great event. Keystone Lintels is the UK and Irelands market leader in the design and manufacture of steel lintels and bespoke structural support products. Part of the Keystone Group, Keylite roof windows offers a full range of roof windows, blinds, timber loft ladders, flashings, electric operation kits and accessories.