Triton Construction has been appointed as main contractor to preserve and redevelop the historic, Grade 2 listed Hyde Park Picture House in Leeds. The £2.8 million contract follows news that the treasured venue has secured a National Lottery Heritage Fund grant with match funding from Leeds City Council to secure its future.
Renowned for its history and architectural prominence, Hyde Park Picture house opened at the beginning of World War One in November 1914. It was popular for screening patriotic dramas and newsreels to boost morale during the War. The Picture House survived the advent of sound in the movies and remains an iconic independent cinema, screening the best films from around the world.
The major revamp is to include conservation works to the external façade, expansion of the foyer and the creation of a second cinema room in the basement, underneath the main auditorium. Whilst modern facilities will be installed, much of the heritage features will be retained and restored, including the gas lamps thought to be the only lights still in operation in a cinema anywhere in the world.
Following a rigorous prequalification and tender process, Triton Construction was appointed for the job due to its extensive expertise in listed building restoration.
Ian Chapman, Construction Director at Triton Construction, said, “As a local contractor we are delighted to be appointed to restore this cultural gem that we are fondly familiar with and to play our part in securing its future.
“The project is not without its challenges due to its listed nature, but also because of the very tight site restrictions within a dense populated area. To allow a 2-metre dig underneath the building for the second auditorium we will need to install a piled wall around the footprint of the site. Considerable provisions and ongoing public consultation are also critical for delivering the works in a live environment.”
Wendy Cook, Head of Cinema for The Hyde Park Picture House, said, “From the very start, The Picture House Project has been a labour of love for all involved. And with the appointment of Triton as the project’s main contractor, we’re confident that we’ve found a partner who not only shares in our passion but has the vital heritage experience required to realise our exciting plans to the highest possible standard.”
Triton will start on site next month and expects to complete the restoration within 57 weeks.
The professional team includes Page\Park Architects, project manager Avison Young, engineering consultancy Buro Happold and cost consultants Gardiner Theobold.
Triton Construction Ltd has considerable experience of working on heritage projects and is familiar with working alongside the Historic England Guidelines, planning conditions and Listed Building Consent. Last year it successfully completed the major redevelopment of the landmark Royal Liver Building in Liverpool.
Local project experience includes the refurbishment of three mill buildings at a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Saltaire, the £2.8 million refurbishment of the Grade 2 listed Unity Hall in Wakefield, and the £1.5 million refurbishment of the Grade 2 listed Cliffe House and Coach House in Shepley.
Triton Construction is a £50 million turnover company providing design and build, civils, fit out and refurbishment services across all sectors. Established for 15 years it employs over 80 people across offices in the North West and Yorkshire.