We love nothing more than creating new buildings and bespoke structures designed to work hard for the owner, the business and those that operate within. But that’s just part of our role, as architects preserving and bringing buildings back to life and into use is a gift! This is certainly the case for our latest project – the refurbishment of the iconic Northgate House in Dewsbury Town Centre.
Over recent years, MWA has been involved in the Dewsbury Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI), which is a five-year Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) regeneration programme delivered in partnership with Kirklees Council. Its goal is to preserve and enhance buildings within the conservation area of Dewsbury town centre.
Supporting this project was important to MWA, we have been based in Dewsbury for over 40 years, we’re part of the landscape, it’s our home!
This combined with our deep understanding of the town’s quality architecture and our experience of heritage sites, helped to secure our role in this exciting, transformational project.
We started out supporting Imsons, an established retail company in the town centre, assisting in the refurbishment of their shopfronts. More recently, we have completed work on Northgate House, which many will remember as the Old Gas Works Showroom, opposite the newly renovated Pioneer House.
Our role has been to design and manage the external and internal restoration, bringing the building back to its original condition. Functionality was also key, whilst we had to stay true to the buildings original form we also needed to meet with current legislation – all within the restrictions set by the conservation guidelines and the criteria detailed by the funders.
A new shopfront, a refurbished roof and new windows were part of the transformation, with structural repairs, replacement stonework and new railings.
Bringing each section of the building back to its original form required the use of specific materials, especially when restoring and replacing the railings and windows, all of which were influenced by the Dewsbury Design Guide.
Making the building safe from the elements was integral to the renovation work, especially when we needed to bring internal and external space back into use. With exceptional results Northgate House now boasts a terraced area to accommodate seating and an attractive roof terrace for future use.
We complete every project with passion and have a genuine desire to make a building work harder, but we feel privileged to play an important role in bringing this area back to its former glory, preserving and protecting the past - a piece of our local history.