Wakefield Cathedral Re-Ordering
by Thomas Ford and Partners
Client Wakefield Cathedral
Awards RIBA Yorkshire Award 2017 and RIBA Yorkshire Conservation Award 2017
Wakefield Cathedral is the tallest church in Yorkshire and the current re-ordering is testament to conservation where long-term planning, community participation, vision, patience, leadership, and collaborative team work were essential to deliver what is an exceptional project. The scheme revitalises both the architecture of the historic cathedral dating back to 12th century and latest addition by John Loughborough Pearson of the east end, which came to fruition between 1903 & 1905, following the raising of the previous parish church to Cathedral status in 1888.
Like all historic grade I buildings, the work carried out demonstrates a complete control and great deal of sensitivity to ensure the original architectural heritage is enhanced and any interventions comply with the strictest code of conservation techniques and materials to ensure enrichment of the original intentions of a Grade I listed building. Whilst the reordering makes the cathedral a place suitable for the 21st Century, it is evident through the increased visitor numbers that a whole new life has been ushered in by the refurbishment of the building, ensuring its commitment to the community it serves.
As the design team states:
“The brief was to repair and adapt the building sympathetically to provide inclusive access for diverse liturgical and community activities that would place the cathedral once more at the heart of city life. Prior to the project, Wakefield Cathedral was dilapidated and rapidly becoming obsolete; fixed pews, leaking roofs, poor heating and lighting were contributing to an inflexible and unwelcoming environment”.
Our conservation assessor noted: ”The building has demonstrated creative repair, adaptive re-use of the historic building and regeneration of an under-used building, giving a new life to the building and adding a new space of occupancy to the city”.
Contractor William Anelay Ltd
Structural Engineer The Morton Partnership Ltd & Blackett-Ord Conservation Ltd
M&E Engineer Martin Thomas Associates
Lighting Design Light Perceptions Ltd
Audio Visual Designer DM Music Ltd
Archaeological Contractor Wessex Archaeology (Sheffield)
CDM Principal Designer Pierce Hill Project Services Ltd
Quantity Surveyor Mace Cost Consultancy Ltd (Northern Region)