Saving the former Welsh Baptists Chapel
Less than half a mile outside Manchester City Centre sits one of Manchester’s most important historic buildings, the former Welsh Baptists Chapel. It is a building with a very interesting history and was designed by the famous architectural duo of AWN Pugin and Charles Barry, later collaborators on the Palace of Westminster.
Since the roof of the building became unsafe and was removed in 2007, the building has deteriorated rapidly, and is on Historic England’s list of top 10 “Buildings At Risk”. In 2010 specialist historic building developer Church Converts agreed to take on the challenge, and three years later obtained planning and listed building consent to restore the building and convert it into residential accommodation.
Saving the Chapel is a highly complex project. Essentially a new building is being built with the shell of the Welsh Baptists Chapel to provide six floors of studio accommodation, with the former Sunday School also converted into apartments. Finally a small building is being added in the former churchyard to provide additional living space. The building work is underway and is expected to be completed by the end of July 2017, at which time one of Manchester’s most important buildings will have been saved.