Leeds & West Yorkshire

Halifax Georgian Piece Hall awarded lottery grant

Artist's impression of the Piece Hall in 2015
Image caption Calderdale Council has said the revamp will strengthen Halifax's civic pride

A bid for lottery funding to help transform an 18th Century cloth hall in West Yorkshire has been successful.

Calderdale Council wants to restore and repair the Piece Hall, a Grade I-listed building in Halifax, which was built in 1779 as a hall for trading cloth.

Work on the £19m project will start in late 2013 and be completed in 2015.

The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has agreed to invest £7m in the project. The council said the announcement was "fantastic news".

'National treasure'

Image caption The building is one of only two surviving cloth halls in Europe

The revamped Piece Hall will include a visitor and heritage centre, shops, restaurants, workspaces for creative businesses and a conference venue.

The courtyard will also become a "spectacular public space" for markets, concerts and festivals, the council said.

Calderdale Council, which is funding a large part of the project, is also exploring other funding options.

Councillor Tim Swift, leader of the council, said: "A revitalised Piece Hall will be a magnet for visitors, offering a spectacular heritage attraction and public space and excellent leisure and retail business opportunities.

"This will be of huge economic benefit to the town and to Calderdale as a borough."

He added: "We put a great bid together and the HLF's decision confirms what Calderdale people have always known, that the Piece Hall is a national treasure and a huge asset to the region."

Fiona Spiers, head of the HLF for Yorkshire, said the award would "help create a vibrant piazza which will retain the integrity of the 18th Century architecture and celebrate its role in West Yorkshire history".

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