Facility managed by KEY features in Scottish Award for Quality in Planning 2017

Nucleus, the  Nuclear and Caithness Archives, has featured in a prestigious Scottish Government awards event as Highland Council won a prize in the Scottish Awards for Quality in Planning 2017.  KEY has provided ongoing facilities management services for Nucleus since 2015, including through the design and mobilisation phases (read the Case Study here).

The Quality in Planning awards are part of the Scottish government’s Planning and Architecture Division, and highlight excellence in all areas of the planning process, from initial processing to how individual projects utilise the themes of Place and Partnership.

The archive, located in Wick, Caithness, featured in the Place category, reflecting not only its position in the surrounding landscape but also socio-economic considerations including bringing much needed employment to the area.  A panel of four judges shortlisted 22 projects overall, and Nucleus takes its place amongst other significant legacy project winners.

The Nucleus building has a distinctive triangular shape, and makes maximum use of natural light in its public spaces.  The archive points due north, and is surrounded by seeded wildflower meadows.


Owned by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) the Nucleus archive, opened to the public in February 2017.  The archive provides a consolidated location for the records of the UK’s civil nuclear industry, as well providing a home for the Caithness archive, a local collection which dates back to the 14th century.

The judges commented that:

Nucleus was a wonderful, strong and robust piece of architecture. There was no doubt that it was built to last – which was an important factor in considering its precious cultural and built heritage contents

KEY’s Senior Facilities Manager responsible for the Nucleus contract, Stewart Lackie, said:

KEY Facilities Management congratulates the Highland Council on winning this prestigious Scottish Government award for Quality in Planning.  We continue to be very proud to be part of the team at Nucleus.  Nucleus is an iconic building that we agree reflects not only its position in the surrounding Caithness landscape but also socio-economic considerations bringing much needed employment to the area.

Nucleus is a key part of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority’s mission to preserve and safeguard vital knowledge for future generations. The archive is operated on behalf of the NDA by Restore Plc for whom KEY provides document and facilities management services.

Read the Case Study about KEY’s services for the Nucleus Facility.