Transformation of town hall makes headway
The start of transformation works to the historic Grade II Listed, Kidderminster Town Hall, have now begun in earnest.
This follows the announcement of Worcestershire-based contractor, Speller Metcalfe, as the construction firm behind the project at the end of last year.
Councillor David Ross, Leader of Kidderminster Town Council and Chair of the Council’s Town Hall Committee said: “It is great to see work underway on the transformation of our heritage building. Piling work will be starting in mid-February, so neighbours and shoppers may be aware of this over the next few weeks.
“There is also work being done on the William Hill organ, which is of both national and international significance, and we are very proud to have such a wonderful instrument in our town. We will update as work progresses so everyone can follow the story of this exciting project.”
The redevelopment will see a complete refurbishment of the café area, transforming it into an indoor/outdoor space which can be further divided into separate areas for group entertainment.
In the music hall, the historic ceiling is being restored alongside refurbishment of the floor, and the stage brought up to modern performance standards alongside sound and lighting upgrades. The Town Hall has also secured funding to have the rare organ pipework professionally cleaned.
Throughout the building there will also be upgrades to the mechanical and electrical services, installation of a new lift, improved disabled entrances and refurbishment of ground floor toilet areas. The King Charles suite roof is also being restored with improvements in insulation features to make the room more energy efficient and welcoming.
Finally, the project team will be restoring and cleaning the heritage features outside of the Town Hall to ensure they continue to stand the test of time.
Contractor Speller Metcalfe has a long-standing and successful history of redeveloping heritage buildings, including the world-famous Museum of Making in Derby, the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham and the Grand Theatre in Wolverhampton.
“There is something incredibly special about historic buildings, and the sense of history and character as you walk through the doors is something you can’t replace,” says Mark Hudgeon, regional director at Speller Metcalfe.
He continued: “Our purpose as the contractor is to bring the Town Hall into a modern era, but as importantly, to retain the character and ambience of the building - enabling it to thrive as part of the community for years to come.”
The redevelopment of one of Kidderminster’s most historic landmarks is being delivered by Kidderminster Town Council, who own the building, in partnership with Wyre Forest District Council and North Worcestershire Economic Development and Regeneration (NWedR). This is one of three major projects being funded through the Government’s Levelling Up Fund. The second project is to bring back into use an empty listed heritage building in the heart of town, and thirdly to create a new walking and cycle pathway along the canal towpath in partnership with Worcestershire County Council - linking the heritage and natural assets with Kidderminster town centre. The towpath restoration is now complete.
£17.9 million has been allocated across the schemes, with the Town Hall securing £8.5 million to support its sensitive regeneration.
The project is due to complete in Spring 2025, and has been procured through the Constructing West Midlands framework.