Youngster praised for entry in design competition

Posted on 29 Mar 2019 and read 517 times
Youngster praised for entry in design competitionWilliam Tonks — a 10-year-old Tamworth boy who submitted an impressive entry to a Network Rail footbridge design competition — was invited to the launch of an exhibition at the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) ( in London, where his entry was showcased to around 100 guests, including Network Rail chairman Sir Peter Hendy.

Stuart Tonks, William’s father, said: “I’m really proud of William’s entry. We knew he was unlikely to win, but we wanted to encourage him to follow his passion for bridges and engineering.

“The feedback we’ve had from the judges has been really helpful and has only strengthened William’s desire to pursue a career in engineering.”

Sir Peter said: “It’s wonderful to see somebody as young as William with the enthusiasm and ability to enter the footbridge competition, and we are all delighted to see his design showcased at the exhibition.

“We hope he goes on to become a railway engineer — we need him and many others in the future.”

“The challenge set by Network Rail and RIBA was to design fully accessible footbridges that could be used across Britain’s rail network.

“More than 120 entries were received from 19 countries, with Gottlieb Paludan Architects announced as the winner. Their design was described as “a bold elegant bridge with a resolved design aesthetic”.

The winning entry is also now on show at a public exhibition at RIBA (in London), which runs until 3 April, before going on display at two of Network Rail’s managed stations – London Waterloo and Manchester Piccadilly.

Anthony Dewar, head of buildings and architecture at Network Rail (, said: “Footbridges are a key part of Britain’s rail infrastructure, and they can have a significant positive impact on their local environment. The competition was a huge success.”

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