Sheffield’s City Hall is a Grade II* listed building designed in the 1920s as a memorial to soldiers who lost their lives during the First World War. Today it is an important part of the city’s thriving cultural quarter, with a full schedule of concerts and events throughout the year.
The brief for this major refurbishment was to improve the way the building works and to make it more accessible, visible and attractive to the public. As part of a wider programme of city centre regeneration, the project also involved cleaning the exterior of the hall and revitalising the adjacent civic space.
Internally, we completely refurbished the three auditoria and transformed the front of house area with new circulation routes, enlarged foyer spaces and stunning new bars. Additional backstage accommodation was created above the semicircular Memorial Hall to the rear.
To recapture the style and exuberance of the original design, we faithfully reinstated the ornamental paintwork and gilding. For the new elements, we used contemporary materials such as stainless steel, polished granite and plate glass, while following the compositional principles of the existing building to complement its fine classical design.
We worked with Arup to reverse the ventilation system using the existing built-in ducts and carefully inserted new lifts and stairs to allow access to all levels, which did not exist previously.