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Judges face tough decision at James Rennie Medal final

16 March 2022

Ronan Royston from Ward and Burke Construction claimed the medal for his work on the Blanchardstown Regional Drainage Scheme Project in Dublin, Ireland.

Judges face tough decision at James Rennie Medal final
2022 James Rennie Medal winner Ronan Royston (left), with ICE President Ed McCann (right).

Chartered Engineer Ronan Royston from Ward and Burke Construction has won this year’s James Rennie Medal for his presentation on the Blanchardstown Regional Drainage Scheme Project.

The James Rennie Medal recognises the best Chartered Professional Review (CPR) and CPR (Progressive) candidate of the year.

This year’s finalists, Jim Batty, Eleanor Lockhart and Royston, were selected from 1,307 reviews that took place in 2021. The judges reported facing an especially difficult decision to select this year’s winner.

The ceremony was held at the ICE HQ, One Great George Street, and simultaneously streamed online so that a wider audience could enjoy hearing from some of ICE’s brightest up-and-coming engineers.

'Embrace engineering'

Royston’s presentation outlined his role as the project and design manager on the Blanchardstown Regional Drainage Scheme Project, an €88 million investment to construct 3.2km of tunnelled sewers and 30,000m3 of attenuation.

The expansion of the network provides long-term social and economic benefits to the community, reducing spills to the River Tolka and Dublin Bay.

After being chosen as this year’s winner, Royston said he was honoured for the accolade, especially after watching all the presentations competing in the final.

“For others aiming for professional qualification, I’d encourage them to embrace engineering and the challenges it presents, to get on site and do the hard work that is needed to produce good engineering and carbon-efficient solutions,” he said.

'A very tough decision'

Darren James, chair of the James Rennie Medal award panel, said the final lived up to all expectations: “We knew that we would have three excellent finalists, and they didn’t let us down with their fantastic presentations.”

Despite finding it difficult to choose the winner, James said Royston deserved the award as the ‘top newly chartered engineer’.

“I hope this will encourage others to come forward and progress to their Professional Review, and potentially be considered for future James Rennie Medal finals,” he said.

This year’s final was sponsored by Arup, BAM Nuttall, Charles Brand, Keltbray, Kier, Skanska and Tony Gee.

Aiming for professional qualification?

The James Rennie Medal celebrates the role of newly chartered civil engineers, including CPR and CPR (Progressive) candidates. The CPR (Progressive) is for candidates who have already passed an Incorporated Professional Review and are aiming to become chartered.

The ICE's professional qualifications – Engineering Technician, Incorporated Engineer and Chartered Engineer – command respect.

Those aiming to become professionally qualified who need advice on next steps should contact the ICE's Membership Support team for help.

  • Ed Horton, marketing project manager at ICE