A dedicated practice with a 100% competition success rate and high client-satisfaction scores, David Morley stood head and shoulders above the competition in this Lafarge-sponsored award
David Morley Architects

At David Morley, each of the practice's 37 staff is encouraged to have at least one new idea a day. How about using aerofoil shapes to help natural stack ventilation? What about an away day to plan the firm's future? This suggestion is one of the keys to the character of David Morley: it is determined to establish itself as one of the UK's big players. For now, the emphasis is on healthcare and sports projects, but it is planning to target the cultural and commercial sectors. So what are its chances of success? Good, if the past is a guide: it has never failed to win a competition it has entered, including a RIBA competition for a centre in the West End of London. Finally, clients awarded this firm the highest score for any contender in any category on the satisfaction survey: 97% for integrity.

Cartwright Pickard Architects

This practice is at the cutting edge of current thinking about the future of construction. In fact, with the Peabody Trust's celebrated prefabricated housing scheme in east London, it's no exaggeration to say that the practice is drawing the blueprint for the Eganised, modular, defect-free industry of the next century. The practice is now taking the lessons of Murray Grove forward in schemes such as Poplar Tree Gardens in York. Innovation, in future, will come as standard.

Hugh Broughton Architects

This small practice scored top marks from the clients for creativity and business knowledge – a good combination of skills if a firm is going to stay the course. Hugh Broughton has made its name with a few conversions of high-profile buildings, including the TUC's Congress House, and, impressively, has formed partnering relationships with two demanding clients: the Society of the Inner Temple in London and the British Council, which has offices across the world.

Excellent approach to winning repeat business; has completed fine buildings for demanding clients

Weston Williamson

For a young practice, Weston Williamson has some impressive schemes under its belt, most notably the Jubilee Line Extension station at London Bridge. The design it is most pleased with, however, is the one for its own offices in Southwark, south London, undertaken after the practice realised it couldn't bear to go on sending cheques to its landlord in Antigua. This striking glass and concrete edifice, whose construction Weston Williamson project managed, incorporates everything the practice has learned in its lifetime.