Entertainment & Arts

Yorkshire's Hepworth gallery wins design award

Hepworth Wakefield
Image caption The gallery's design has split local opinion

The Hepworth Wakefield art gallery has won the best architecture prize at this year's British Design Awards.

The £35m gallery was designed by David Chipperfield Architects, who were also behind the Turner Contemporary gallery in Margate.

The public voted for their favourite projects from a shortlist which also included the St Pancras Renaissance Hotel in London.

The Hepworth has attracted more than 250,000 visitors since its May opening.

"This is a fantastic achievement," said Simon Wallis, director of the gallery.

"The Hepworth Wakefield is one of the most sensitively designed galleries to be found anywhere," he added.

The gallery, named after sculptor Barbara Hepworth who lived in the West Yorkshire city until the age of 18, contains dozens of Hepworth's works and prototypes as well as pieces by Henry Moore and JMW Turner.

The building, which sits next to the River Calder, has divided opinion among locals.

Image caption The gallery received £18m from the local council and £5m from the Heritage Lottery Fund

"Some people don't like the building," admitted Councillor Peter Box, leader of Wakefield Council, when the gallery opened.

"They think it looks like a concrete bunker. And I understand that.

"But at least for the first time in many years there's a real serious debate about modern architecture on the streets of Wakefield."

The British Design Awards, now in its 10th year, features several other categories including best interior design and best product design.

The winners in the remaining categories will be announced in the December edition of Elle Decoration and the Saturday Telegraph in early November.

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