The Challenge:

Taking the iconic Grade II listed Oldham Old Town Hall, a building that was once a symbol of civic pride and latterly a symbol of the town's decline, and brining new life to it. The building was constructed in 1841 and extended in 1879 to include a courtroom and additional accommodation. A second extension, completed in 1917, included a number of highly decorated ’gracious rooms’. However, when the council moved services to the new Civic Centre in 1978 the building became obsolete and gradually became vacant.

Oldham Council turned to our building conservation experts to help preserve the building and find a sustainable future.

The Solution:

This was an important and fascinating project for the team, beginning with surveys of the building's condition, followed by the removal of asbestos, an environmental clean and making it safe and weathertight. The design team took part in appraisals and feasibility studies to determine a viable use for the building that would maintain key heritage features.The client opted for an ambitious development that involved extensive remodelling and refurbishment to turn the building into a seven-screen cinema with six restaurants, a coffee shop and complementary retail units.

The new design makes full use of the building while retaining all the ‘gracious rooms’ and the main staircases in the 1841 and 1917 buildings. Kier provided civil, structural, building services and highways engineering design for the redevelopment project, which was delivered using Building Information Modelling (BIM) with a fully collaborative design model created after a detailed laser survey to accurately measure the building.

The Impact:

The development has injected new life into the building and turned it into a vibrant metropolitan facility, complete with a seven-screen cinema, six restaurants and retail areas.

The development is seen as the cornerstone of the Town Centre Regeneration Programme with the potential to stimulate new jobs and generate additional economic activity in Oldham Town Centre. The new venue has created 74 full time and 159 part time jobs, and will generate an estimated £5.5 million extra for the local economy each year.

View more projects

Every project we deliver is an opportunity for us to bring our unique thinking to solve problems, innovate and collaborate with our clients and beyond.

Our Projects >