Pleased to Meet You designer takes top honour at Northern Design Awards

CannyBrewA pub “decorator” from Tyneside has been named the year’s top interior designer at the Northern Design Awards.

Collective Design founder Simon McIlwraith picked up the title – at a glitzy ceremony in Manchester – for his work on the city’s new Pleased to Meet You “gin emporium”, which opened in June.

“Pleased to Meet You was a privilege to work on and was both challenging and rewarding,” said Simon. “And it is amazing to win such a fantastic award

“I am so pleased that I was voted as Interior designer of the Year based on this project. It’s great to be recognised for something you love to do.”

Simon founded Newcastle-based Collective design in 2010, and after only three short years his work can be seen in the interiors of pubs including the city’s Charles Grey, Lady Greys and Redhouse, Popolo in Durham, and The Wellwood in Amble, Northumberland.

Barry Ladhar, of Pleased to Meet You, Redhouse, Lady Greys and Charles Grey owner Ladhar Group, said he was proud of Simon’s success.

“We are so proud of this achievement,” he said. “For PTMY to be acknowledged in this way is outstanding.

“We have a strong relationship with Collective Design and have a number of ground breaking projects in the pipeline for 2014 which Collective are developing with us at the moment. We believe 2014 will be another successful year and we are very excited.”

The awards were hosted by designer Wayne Hemingway, with the winners picked by a panel that included former Changing Rooms designer Linda Barker, RIBA chairman Geoff Alsop, and Sir Terence Conran

“As a proud northerner and designer, I was excited to have the honour of both judging and hosting the Northern Design Awards this year,” said Wayne.

“There is a great deal of passion, drive and talent in the north and these awards serve to recognise and reward those who go the extra mile.

“Winning such accolades can do wonders for businesses large and small.”