This regeneration project with Shropshire Council re-developed the Music Hall, one of Shrewsbury’s most important architectural landmarks.
The new heritage visitor Centre is actually a complex of historic buildings, including the Grade II* listed 13th century Vaughan’s Mansion, one of the UK’s few remaining early medieval defensive hall houses, the 19th century Music Hall, 18th century prison cells and a 20th century civil defence bunker.
The complex was comprehensively stripped out, with all historical elements repaired and retained, to provide multi-use areas and enhanced circulation space. A new two-storey steel frame link extension was constructed to improve accessibility and a mezzanine viewing gallery built above the central café area.
A major programme of external refurbishment saw sympathetic repairs to the building’s façade and roof. ISG delivered a new glazed feature entrance and created a piazza at the heart of the complex, including a 100 seat courtyard café and bistro. The old Music Hall is now the main exhibition area and the ground floor of Vaughan’s Mansion houses the county’s important Roman Collection. Other important regional collections have relocated to the new heritage visitor site, which also features a dedicated museum shop and visitor information services.
University of Birmingham students were given unrivalled access to the site. ISG welcomed 20 students from the University’s MA in Heritage Management course to the site for a guided tour. The students were provided with a detailed account of 700 years of Shrewsbury’s development, through the interpretation of the standing archaeology within the Music Hall complex.
ISG also held a Hard Hat Tour Open Day for the general public, in conjunction with Shropshire Council and the chosen charity Macmillan Cancer Research UK. Small groups were given guided tours of the complex by ISG whilst the design team provided specialist lectures.