Rochdale Town Hall restoration moves forward

26 February 2019
Credit: Wikimedia: Tim Green
  • Wikimedia: Tim Green


United Kingdom

Design team selected to transform renowned gothic building

The £16m redevelopment of Rochdale’s grade I listed town hall has taken a major step forward, with the appointment of architectural firm Donald Insall Associates to lead the restoration effort. The announcement follows a successful round one £8.9m bid to the National Lottery Heritage Fund for the transformation of the Victorian town hall, considered as one of the best examples of gothic architecture in the UK.

The winning team have worked on similarly prestigious conservation projects including the Houses of Parliament and Manchester’s John Rylands Library. Councillor John Blundell, Rochdale’s cabinet member for regeneration, stated: “The town hall is a place of majesty and beauty, which is renowned across the country. For that reason, we set the bar extremely high when selecting specialists to lead its restoration. A building so special needs the absolute best and we’re confident we’ve got the calibre here to make this critical project a huge success.” 

The landmark building, which was once at the heart of the borough's civic life but is now used mainly for functions, will also be brought back into use for the public. Interpretations will tell the story of Rochdale, while the old library will be re-opened for community use as the new Bright Hall, in honour of prominent industrialists and radical politicians, the Bright family. 

Landscape designers Gillespies, recently appointed to lead the £3 million redesign of Town Hall Square, will work alongside Donald Associates to create an improved public realm. The scheme is part of the wider £400 million regeneration of Rochdale town centre. Tony Barton, Chairman of Donald Insall Associates, said: “Our team is proud to have been selected to help deliver this important project to provide a world class focus for residents and visitors as part of the council’s on-going transformation of the area.” 

The town hall restoration is due for completion in 2023.

Lucy Nordberg

TenderStream Head of Research

This tender was first published by TenderStream on 01.11.2018 here

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