The Sheerness Dockyard Preservation Trust is recruiting an architect-led design team for a £4.1 million restoration of its grade II* church
The winner of the £600,000 contract will draw up plans to restore and convert the ruined neo-classical landmark into a new flexible business space, restaurant and exhibition area for a large model of the historic harbour.
Planned to complete in 2021, the project will re-open the 1828 naval chapel to the public sixteen years after it was significantly damaged by arson. Currently only the external walls, tower and portico survive of the original building which served Sheerness’ Royal Navy Dockyard until its closure in 1960.
According to the brief: ‘We wish to rescue the building for the nation and transform it into a unique, innovative, viable and beneficial space for the local community. We will create an innovative business and skills venue in Sheerness.
‘The project will bring much needed inward investment, business development and economic activity to a part of Kent that has suffered the effects of long-term deprivation.’
Sheerness – the largest town on the Isle of Sheppey in the Thames Estuary – started out as a seventeenth century fort protecting the nearby River Medway. Sheerness remained a naval dockyard until 1960 when operations ceased and large areas of the settlement became derelict.
The former Royal Naval dockyard chapel is one of several surviving structures including a fort, two dry docks and some terraced housing. Designed by John Rennie, the 1828 building is now owned by the preservation trust which aims to transform the building into a focus for regeneration in the wider area.
The project will restore the chapel and create a new business incubator space for young people from the surrounding island. It will also deliver a restaurant area, education space, events room and a first floor gallery for exhibiting a unique large-scale model of the historic dockyard.
The deadline for applications is 12noon on 9 August.
How to apply
View the contract notice for more information
The Sheerness Dockyard Preservation Trust
4 Naval Terrace