Todmorden Town Council have appointed Buttress Architects, from Manchester, to take forward the renovation of the Bandstand, with funding having been secured through a combination of Town Deal Funds and an award from The National Lottery Heritage Fund with monies raised by National Lottery players.

Buttress will work with the Town Council and the Bandstand Group to arrive at a solution that aims to not only respect the Grade 2 listed status but also to seek to deliver improved security and functionality to the Bandstand.

Planning Permission, Listed Building Consent and an Environment Agency Permit as well as other landowner permissions will be required. Buttress will be seeking these permissions on behalf of the Town Council and alongside this work, will also be preparing construction tender documents, so that as soon as all permissions are in place tenders can be issued.

Built in 1914, the Edwardian Bandstand is one of only five surviving open-fronted ‘theatre’ style Bandstands and, as such, it has remained a highly visible and historic local landmark in the town for over a century. The Bandstand sits at the top of Todmorden’s principal green space, Centre Vale Park, and once renovated its future will be secured for community use including performances, festivals and events throughout the year.

As part of the project, Todmorden Town Council is not only working with the local community-led Bandstand Group, but also with Todmorden High School to encourage interest in heritage construction and help create a time-line for Todmorden, which will be featured near the Bandstand when work is completed.

Buttress will be leading on these elements of the overall programme, which will also include work experience placements for up to five students who may be considering being an architect in the future.

L to R – Pam Warhurst, Chair, Todmorden Town Deal Board, Colin Hill, Project Manager, Todmorden Town Council, Cllr Tyler Hanley, Town Mayor, Todmorden Town Council, Todmorden Bandstand Group

Cllr Denis Skelton, Leader, Todmorden Town Council said:

“Having secured funding, the appointment of Buttress after tendering for services, is another milestone towards bringing the bandstand back to life. The opportunity to involve the High School and help students understand more about the heritage of Todmorden and specifically the Bandstand, as well as understand more about being an Architect adds even more value to the actual construction project itself. Grateful thanks are extended to Buttress for taking this forward and to Gill Shirt, Head of Todmorden High School for agreeing for students to engage with these activities.”

The restoration of the Bandstand is part of a wider suite of improvements to Centre Vale Park funded by Todmorden Town Deal, in partnership with Todmorden Town Council, including refurbishment of the bowling pavilion, upgrading of the existing tennis courts and the creation of a Multi-Use Games Area.

A new Wheels Park funded by Town Deal Accelerator funding and Todmorden Town Council was opened in the Summer of 2021 and has proved highly popular with children and young people.

Edward Kepcyzk, Associate Director, Buttress Architects said:

“It is really great news to be appointed as Architects for this wonderful project. Our team looks forward to not only working with the Town Council and the Bandstand Group to make this happen, but also to actively engage with Todmorden High School students to better understand heritage and to welcome some students to come to Manchester for work experience and hopefully want to become Architects in the future.”

Partnership and collaboration across Todmorden, and beyond, including with young people, is a key feature of the Todmorden Town Deal Board approach as it progresses the £17.5M package of improvements for the town.

Pam Warhurst, Chair, Todmorden Town Deal Board said:

“It’s great news to see the Centre Vale Park project take another step forward with the appointment of architects for the restoration of our unique Bandstand for community use. Involving young people in how their town is developed for the future, and encouraging them to have pride and confidence in where they live is a priority for the Board, so I am especially delighted that Todmorden High School will be at the heart of the project as it moves forward.