Specialist restoration of the historic outdoor sculptures and windows at Todmorden Town Hall will soon be underway.
Temporary scaffolding will be installed outside the building very soon, signalling the start of Calderdale Council’s essential repair works.
The expert works need to be carried out very carefully to protect the Grade I Listed building’s unique heritage features, so the project is expected to take up to 10 weeks, provided that the weather is favourable. The Council chose Bullen Conservation to complete the restoration after a competitive bidding process. The company, based in Oldham, has a strong track record of preserving historic buildings.
Todmorden Town Hall was awarded over £22,000 of funding from WREN (Waste Recycling Environmental Limited) last year to help towards the restoration. The not-for-profit business awards grants for community, conservation and heritage projects using funding from landfill tax. The grant, together with match-funding from Calderdale Council and a generous contribution from Todmorden Town Council, will help return the roof’s intricate statues and roundel windows to their former glory. The stone statues have deteriorated over time, and the acid-etched glazing in the windows has cracked.
The iconic sculptures and windows have great historical significance in Todmorden. The statues reflect local traditional jobs and the location of the Town Hall between Yorkshire and Lancashire. There are 10 in total – three textile workers, a book keeper, two matriarchs representing Yorkshire and Lancashire, a blacksmith, two corn harvesters and a shepherd.
Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities, Cllr Marcus Thompson, said:
“We are delighted that the specialist restoration work is starting. We know how important Todmorden Town Hall is to the local community, and our investment in the project shows our commitment to the magnificent building. We are mindful that the works will be underway over the festive period, but this will not affect access to the building. We have spoken to all the groups who have already booked the Town Hall between now and Christmas to make them aware of the works, and they have been very understanding.”
Cabinet Member for Corporate Asset and Facilities Management, Housing and Environment, Cllr Scott Benton, added:
“Todmorden Town Hall is such an impressive building, and we want to make sure that its unique heritage features are protected and enjoyed for years to come. The sculptures within the pediment and the roundel windows are an important part of the town’s heritage, and it will be great to see them restored when the works are complete.”
Inside the Town Hall, a new lift is now up and running after it was installed in summer to replace the old one. Last year, Calderdale Council’s Cabinet agreed that the old lift was no longer reliable due to a number of break downs, and allocated funding for a replacement.