Westcourt Group impressed architectural experts with its sympathetic transformation of a historic Grade II listed building into a contemporary office space - winning praise from judges at the Leeds Architecture Awards for the quality of its work at the four-storey Kenneth Hodgson House in the city.
Director of Westcourt, Tim Hodgson, said: “By nature, property development is more often than not a numbers driven game, but this particular building required a little more heart than head.
Retaining the historic character was of great importance to me. Luckily the fantastic team we had involved during the restoration of Kenneth Hodgson House means we’ve been able to marry the two perfectly, offering four boutique-style office spaces that total just over 2,900 sq ft and returning this historic building to a magnificent, dominating structure once more."
During the renovation, Westcourt uncovered historic features and managed to restore and incorporate them into the new office designs. This included returning a marble floor, which had been covered for years, to its former glory, whilst also retaining an original iron lift, a feature balustrade and tiling.
The former bank, in Park Row, Leeds, was built circa 1900. It boasts an architectural frieze depicting the Goddess of Commerce – Minerva - on the exterior, flanked on either side by traders from across the world.
Westcourt Group also picked up a commendation in the ‘Best Conserved Building’ category at the awards. Tim Hodgson, Director of Westcourt Group, named the development Kenneth Hodgson House after his father, who started the business in 1992.
The project was also given a special mention for its carefully considered feature lighting scheme, designed to place an emphasis on the many historical features in the building, which will now offer 4 self-contained office suites.
The judging team, which included representatives of the Leeds Civic Trust and the Royal Institute of British Architects, judged developments on criteria including the relation to the setting, appropriate use of materials, and consistency of design.
Organised by Leeds City Council and Leeds Chamber Property Forum, the Leeds Architecture Awards were set up to promote and provide a showcase for best practice in architecture and design.