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Halliday Clark Architects reworks historic Yorkshire church with new link extension

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The Grade II*-listed church and adjacent church hall have been refurbished and connected by a modern extension to create a flexible, fully accessible community facility

All Saints Parish Church in Ilkley, West Yorkshire, commissioned local practice Halliday Clark Architects to design a new link building to connect the existing church to its adjacent Church House – a church hall facility that has also been refurbished as part of the project to provide a new kitchen, WCs and meeting facilities. The aim was to give the church a more flexible space with improved access, to be used for a wide range of community activities.

The church itself, a Grade II*-listed building is surrounded by a historic burial site and has been built on the ruins of a Roman fort (an ancient scheduled monument). The project included replacing its pews, putting in new underfloor heating, refurbishing its Yorkshire stone floor and installing bespoke heritage lighting and audiovisual equipment.

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A key driver of the brief was the need to consolidate floor levels across the scheme as part of the project’s inclusive access strategy. The site’s historic integrity meant the new extension had to be designed so its foundations and drainage did not go deeper than 450mm under the existing surface level. As a result, local ground levels were raised and the link sits on raft foundations to maintain a uniform floor level.

The link forms a fully-glazed structure, lightly touching the ground and providing unbroken views throughout.

The project was partially funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, with that money spent exclusively on the scheme’s heritage aspects. Ongoing funding meant that the works had to be phased, with the exact split of the programme unplanned until work commenced.

Halliday Clark worked closely with the church and principal contractor to ensure that local trades and materials were selected.

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Architect’s view

The link was conceived to be a modern, fully glazed structure which lightly touches the site, preserving site archaeology, providing unbroken views throughout and giving inclusive access across the whole church level. This was realised using carefully specified glazing systems consisting of an ultra-thin frame and detailed in such a way that the sills and heads of the windows are completely hidden in the ground and the roof structure.

A minimalism of detail creates a serene and calm environment, free of unnecessary embellishment. The well-lit interior is a literal welcoming beacon to the community; the rhythm of stone ‘fins’ on the south side of the building offers an invitation for people to gather and take shelter as well as creating a means of breaking up the glazing of the link, allowing the character of the link to change as it is viewed from different angles. The fins reinforce the lightweight nature of the link through detail which allows the roof to appear to float over the tops of them.

The materials were chosen to be complementary to the existing buildings, but used in a modern way to identify this as a new chapter in a homogenous story of this site.

Adam Clark, director, Halliday Clark Architects

Hc church lower ground floor plan

Client’s view

We are delighted to be working with Halliday Clark for this major development of our church and our associated buildings. Throughout, Richard Walsh and his colleagues have given us sound advice and proposals, and have interpreted our needs and ambitions most successfully. They have brought imagination to what can be done, and have been sensitive to our comments. They have also respected our limitations of finance, the limitations of Diocesan Faculties, and the limitations of having two listed buildings on the site of a Roman Fort. And in spite of those limitations, we are getting a creative and flexible outcome for worship and a wide range of community activity.

Derek Twine, development co-ordinator, All Saints Parish Church

Hc church ground floor plan

Project data

Start on site November 2018
Completion April 2019
Gross internal floor area 733m²
Form of contract Traditional single stage tender with JCT Standard Form of contract
Construction cost £900,000
Architect Halliday Clark
Client All Saints Parish Church
Structural engineer Paul Waite Associates
M&E consultant Watsons Building Services
QS Michael Eyres Partnership
Archaeologist Ian Roberts
Project manager Michael Eyres Partnership
Principal designer Michael Eyres Partnership
Approved building inspector Bureau Veritas
Main contractor Dobson Construction
CAD software used AutoCAD

Hc church details 3

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