Feix & Merlin Architects has landed a multi-million-pound restoration and conversion of the fire-damaged former Walworth Town Hall in south London
The practice saw off competition from Squire & Partners in the developer-led contest to restore the Grade II-listed Walworth Road landmark, devastated in a blaze more than five years ago.
The project, backed by developer General Projects, will see the creation of a multi-use cultural space, including employment space for the creative industries and a music studio.
It will also provide a community and culture space in the former Newington Library and includes a new entrance onto the recently completed Walworth Square.
Announcing the appointment, Cllr Johnson Situ, Southwark’s development and planning chief, said the General Projects proposal offered ‘the most benefits’ for Walworth residents and ’demonstrated our ongoing commitment to making the building as publically accessible’.
Tarek Merlin, director at Feix & Merlin, said: ’We are absolutely delighted. This project is very close to our hearts as a local practice in the Borough. We all fell in love with the building from the very first site visit, the original features and heritage elements are sensational, and we can’t wait to breathe new life back into it.
’Walworth Town Hall will be transformed into a proud place of diverse opportunity with lots of different things to do for the local community, from designer-maker workshops, and co-working workspaces to the new café/restaurant, and arts and culture spaces.’
Jacob Loftus, CEO at General Projects, said: ’The Walworth Town Hall is a South London icon and we are delighted and honoured to have been given the opportunity to become its next custodian.
’We are committed to restoring the building back to its former glory, whilst at the same reinventing it as a new creative workspace, community and cultural hub.’
Southwark Council will also commit a £2 million grant to the project to support the extra community space.
The decision to appoint the General Projects team is still subject to approval and will be discussed at Southwark Council’s cabinet meeting tomorrow evening (12 March).
Southwark said there would be further public consultation on the proposals before a planning application is submitted.