15 Lower Hillgate
Artisan Bakery and Pottery Studio is completed
15 Lower Hillgate is an early 19th century building of three storeys and a basement.
The original shopfront was removed in the 20th century and was replaced with metal framed glazing, uPVC doors, and a deep signage facia above. A mock Tudor frontage was installed.
The aim of this project was to dismantle and reconstruct the front elevation, guided by historic photographs, and to return the building to its original use.
Prior to its restoration, 15 Lower Hillgate was originally a bakery, then a ground floor ‘Tudor Café’, with the second floor laying vacant.
The current owners purchased the property in 2020 with plans to restore the building to its former glory and to transform it into a mixed-use space with apartments on the top floors and a commercial ground-floor unit including a pottery studio and bakery.
Click on the picture to see how the building has changed over time.
Before works began
Works upon completion
The Proposed Works
Given its prominence on the street and the level of restoration work needed, 15 Lower Hillgate was identified as a medium priority building as part of the Rediscovering the Underbanks regeneration project. Below is a detailed summary of the proposed works:
Building repair and maintenance
- Reinstatement of shopfront and signage
- New timber sash windows
- Refurbish of upper floors to accommodate potential use
- Repairs to timber details
- Removal of redundant brackets/cables/fixings to brickwork and make good all holes
The Grant Process
An expression of interest in the grant was submitted by the building owners in 2020, followed by architectural drawings and a planning application for the redevelopment. Once these documents were approved, the project then went out to tender.
In December 2020, the project Partnership Board met to award the contract to Rosslee Construction.
The grant funding agreement for 15 Lower Hillgate was formally signed and executed in January 2021 with work starting on site in March.
Given the small scale of the project, a total of three claims were received and paid out to the grantee.
The certificate of completion was received in February 2022.
Kelsall Architects are a local RIBA charted architects practice located in the Underbanks.
In their designs, the architects took the opportunity to improve the energy performance of 15 Lower Hillgate with greater building insulation and energy efficient fixtures and fittings.
Their experience on 15 Lower Hillgate has also placed the architects in good stead to work on other restoration projects. Kelsall Architects now working on numerous other capital projects in the Underbanks.
Rosslee Construction was established in 1977 and is a local company that provides construction services to facilitate new builds, refurbishments, alterations, extensions, restoration, heritage and maintenance works.
They were awarded the building contract for 15 Lower Hillgate in January 2020 as they were deemed to offer the best value and technical capabilities.
Specialists Maysand also held a strong track record in delivering heritage schemes including restoration of Chester City Walls, the Port of Liverpool and Blackpool Tower.
Due to Covid-19 related delays, Maysand started on site slightly later than anticipated, in August 2020. The restoration and certificate of completion was issued in April 2021.