A Midlands-based contractor has been entrusted to restore a number of historic buildings in Stoke-on-Trent.
G F Tomlinson, which has offices in Birmingham, Derby and Newark, is delivering the multi-million pound restorations to Longton Town Hall, Hanley Market Hall and Tunstall Town Hall on behalf of Stoke-on-Trent City Council.
The project – valued at £6.5 million – has already seen the restoration of the Hanley and Longton schemes, which were completed in the second half of last year. While work to Tunstall Town Hall is still ongoing.
The works at Longton Town Hall – which dates back to 1863 – involved the remodelling and refurbishment of the ground floor and public toilets in the adjoining market hall, as well as the installation of a new office area and staff room together with the refurbishment of the existing meeting room – creating a new local centre for Stoke-on-Trent City Council.
The Hanley Market Hall – which is is home to 130 stalls – now boasts upgraded lighting, new ceilings, wall finishings, flooring, and redecorated stall fronts to create a more vibrant place to shop.
It is also one of the first public areas within the city to benefit from a new state-of-the-art disabled-friendly toilet, which is part of the council’s ‘Changing Places’ initiative.
Work is ongoing on the Grade II-listed Tunstall Town Hall which will include the installation of new windows and flitch beams along with the replacement of stone and masonry and external re-pointing.
Internally it will undergo an extensive upgrade including new walls, floors and ceilings decorated in heritage paints to the exact colours they would have been when first built in 1854.
Due to be completed in spring 2021, the hall will also include two shop units, a children’s centre and a library, as well as rentable office space.
Chris Flint, director at G F Tomlinson – which specialises in heritage restoration – said: “With extensive experience working on restoration, heritage and community projects across the region, it has been a real pleasure for us to work on the regeneration of these historic halls in Stoke-on-Trent.
“All three projects were procured through the Scape Regional Construction framework, bringing huge benefits to the delivery of the project, removing the need for a costly and lengthy tender process, and adding overall value for the client.
“We’re really pleased with the results of Longton Town Hall and Hanley Market Hall – our team and supply team have done an amazing job and we look forward to seeing Tunstall follow suit.”
Councillor Daniel Jellyman, cabinet member for regeneration, infrastructure and heritage at Stoke-on-Trent City Council, said: “We understand how important our historic buildings are. The town halls in Tunstall and Longton are fantastic assets and provide a constant reminder of how rich in heritage our city is.
“The aim of the work is to not only invest in their heritage, but also to make them modern, fit-for-purpose buildings that breathe new life into the high street, and ensure the community can access face-to-face services.
“Along with the improvements to Hanley Indoor Market, the work at Longton and Tunstall directly benefit the markets which are connected to both buildings, so we are really seeing a range of benefits from this investment into our heritage.”