Positive signs of progress at Pilgrim’s Quarter Newcastle

Visitors to Newcastle city centre can now see real signs of progress on the construction of the new HMRC complex at Pilgrim’s Quarter, the northern block of the Pilgrim Street regeneration project.

HMRC announced in November 2021 that Newcastle’s Pilgrim’s Quarter, part of the Pilgrim Street development, would become the new home for HM Revenue and Customs in the Northeast. The Newcastle building will be the largest of HMRC’s 13 regional centres at 463,000 sq ft (43,000 sq m) and will accommodate approximately 9,000 HMRC staff.

Demolition and enabling works commenced in late 2021, once planning permission had been secured and a ground-breaking ceremony in June 2022 signaled the start of the new building works. March 2023 sees one new building core rising above the city roofscape, with a second core complete to ground level along with new retaining walls to the Pilgrim Street frontage.

Chris Turnbull of Avison Young, who is project manager for the scheme comments. “We are pleased with the progress on the project which has involved extensive demolition and clearance works in advance of the new build construction. To put this in context, Pilgrim’s Quarter is believed to be one of the largest single occupier building projects within the UK.”

The completed building will incorporate the Grade II Listed façade of Carliol House, which is thought to be one of the largest façade retentions in the country, with a significant steel structure temporarily supporting the Portland stonework. The dome structure on the Carliol House/Market Street junction has been temporarily removed and will be reinstated, later in the construction project.”

Ed Besford, Regional Director, Bowmer and Kirkland said. “We are delighted to have been appointed to construct this prestigious project. We have a dedicated, experienced team who are excited and proud to be working on this scheme, which will bring so much to the City of Newcastle, both in terms of construction jobs and future opportunities for the local workforce.”

The Ryder Architecture designed HMRC, Pilgrim’s Quarter complex is being developed and funded by Reuben Brothers (Newcastle) Ltd. Bowmer and Kirkland (B+K) are the main contractor, both here, and on the soon to be completed Bank House, within the southern Pilgrim Street block.

The Reuben Brothers group of companies have also invested heavily across Newcastle city centre by acquiring Monument Mall, Central Exchange Buildings and, most recently retail on premises on Grainger Street. They are a stakeholder in Newcastle United Football Club, and also own Newcastle racecourse, as well as both Newcastle and Sunderland greyhound stadia.

Commercial, Town Planning, Development, Agency, Property Management and Project Management services are being provided by Avison Young with Architectural Design by Ryder Architecture and Engineering input by Cundall.