Planning and Listed Building Approval for the work at the iconic Parkinson Building were secured in July 2014.
The £1.5m project has been fully modelled using BIM, including fully modelling the existing listed building elements, and full details will now be progressed through to tender with the aim of project completion in winter 2015.
The scheme involves the refurbishment of a suite of rooms to create a climatically controlled gallery space and adjoining public engagement room. The proposed area is within the confines of an existing larger campus building, which is Grade II listed. This GSS project follows on from the Lindisfarne Gospels Exhibition at Durham University, and in several other galleries up and down the country.
Jonathan Hunter, partner, said: “GSS are proud to have been invited to work with the University of Leeds team to design this exciting gallery project in the renowned, listed Parkinson Building, close to the heart of Leeds city centre. This project will mean that the residents of Leeds and the surrounding areas will have access to the rich archive of historic documents and artefacts that are held within the Library strong rooms. The project team have worked closely together over the past six months to secure the necessary HLF funding and we are looking forward to taking this project through to completion.”
Dr Stella Butler, University librarian, said: ‘We are enormously grateful to the Heritage Lottery Fund and to the John Brotherton-Ratcliffe Trust for recognising the transformative effect this project will have on our ability to develop new audiences for Special Collections.”
University of Leeds Vice-Chancellor Sir Alan Langlands said: “We are incredibly proud of our Library with its Special Collections of international importance which have been built up over the past century. I am delighted that this grant will allow us to bring these ‘treasures’ to a much wider audience. We look forward to working with our partners in Leeds and in West Yorkshire to ensure that we make the most of this investment which is of real national and international significance.”