Old town hall cinema in property 'Oscars'
Reporter: Lucy Kenderdine
Date online: 13 March 2017
THE renovation and transformation of Oldham's old town hall into a cinema and restaurant complex has been shortlisted for five prestigious industry awards, including Project of the Year in the 2017 Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Awards North-West.
Known as the region's property "Oscars", the awards recognise and celebrate the innovative projects in the North-West with 42 schemes nominated this year.
The £37 million scheme saw the Grade II-listed building transformed from a once neglected and run-down shell into a hit entertainment destination for the town centre.
Oldham Council leader Jean Stretton said: "We're delighted our old town hall has been recognised and shortlisted for such prestigious awards - it is well worthy of the recognition.
"The original building dates back to 1841 and is a very important part of Oldham's proud past.
"In 2009 the old town hall was declared one of the UK's 'Top Ten Buildings at Risk' by the Victorian Society after being vacant since 1995.
"This was not good enough, so we invested to make it become a big part of our future.
"The extensive renovation works saw the finest of the surviving rooms in the building restored. A new stunning glass and sandstone extension overlooks a transformed public square, creating a spectacular illuminated lightbox at night.
"Many of the cinema screens are in the original rooms and - with the added modern features - this bold contrast between the old and the new gives Oldham's town centre something truly unique. The old town hall is not just a stunning building, it's our flagship regeneration project and there is still much more to come for Oldham."
The painstaking restoration and innovative new additions by project team BDP Architects, Mace Cost Consultancy and Morgan Sindall have earned the project nominations in four categories - Building Conservation, Design through Innovation, Regeneration and Tourism & Leisure - alongside the prestigious Project of the Year title nomination.
Other Greater Manchester schemes in the running for the eight RICS Awards include a new complex of 12 quirky business units known as The Foundry in Salford, the University of Salford's new Multi Faith Centre and a regeneration project known as 'Creating a new Pendleton' - the first phase involved a £75 million refurbishment of nine high rise blocks, low rise apartments and houses.
Winners will be announced on May 19 at the Titanic Hotel in Liverpool with all regional winners competing at the national RICS Awards Grand Final in October.
Have Your Say