Redevelopment Works, Hull Minster, Phase 2

Alan Wood and Partners

‘Phase 2’ involved significant reconfiguration of the inside of the Grade I Listed, 700-year-old church.

The removal of the timber pews that were installed during Victorian times, reverted the Nave back to its’ original open, multi-use space, not only for worship but also for events, festivals and performances, which has vastly increased the Minster’s revenue making capabilities which is crucial for its’ ongoing upkeep and day-to-day running costs.

A number of key, intricate pews were retained and reconfigured alongside the construction of a new, ‘narthex’ entrance porch, new paving being laid throughout, and various mechanical and electrical upgrade works completed, including the installation of a new underfloor heating system.

Engineering and Design Factors

One of the biggest challenges across the various stages of work was in obtaining permissions and approvals from various key bodies, not only from Hull City Council’s planning department, but also from the Diocesan Advisory Committee (DAC) and Parochial Church Council (PCC). Alan Wood & Partners worked closely with the design team at conception and design stage, to alleviate any concerns raised.

During the ‘Phase 2’ reordering works in the Nave, the position of the crypt below provided extra challenges from both a design and construction perspective that had to be overcome. At certain points across the floor area, there was limited cover above the brick arches of the crypt and new finished floor level. This meant that the design of the new floor build-up (which included the new underfloor heating) as well as the practicalities of carrying out the work had to be carefully considered. We worked with the wider design team and the appointed contractor to ensure that all temporary works and precautions were undertaken and any restrictions in floor loads and plant & machinery were communicated so as not to damage the crypt structure below.

Another key challenge was the repositioning of the 1380s font, one of the oldest pieces of furniture in the Minster. Although it only moved a mere 5 metres, this process was critical to allow the installation of the new ‘narthex’ structure that created a porch area designed to prevent draughts, retain heat in the Minster and once more provide a more welcoming feel.

Project:Redevelopment Works, Hull Minster, Phase 2

Alan Wood & Partners