Halifax Piece Hall’s Claire Slattery has won a major national award for her work on the restoration and reopening of the Grade I listed building.
Musical legend Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber - who visited the Piece Hall recently - announced the Historic England Angel Award winners this week with Claire taking the first ever Overall Winner category. Awards judges heard Claire undertook a complex £19 million project to restore the Georgian building and return it as a place of pivotal importance in Halifax.
Lord Lloyd Webber described the Piece Hall as “inspirational” and spoke about it in terms of international importance. He said: “This stunning example of urban renewal should spur on councils of every major city and town in Britain to do something similar. It is as if St Mark’s Square in Venice has been deposited in West Yorkshire and puts Halifax on a par with major cities in Europe.”
Coun Tim Swift, Leader of Calderdale Council, said: “We are so proud of Claire for her role in conserving The Piece Hall for generations to come. Andrew Lloyd Webber summed up the project perfectly as inspirational, which is testament to our determination to make this work despite the tough financial times we are in.”
Nicky Chance-Thompson, chief executive at The Piece Hall Trust, said Claire’s award had thrilled them: “It’s now up to us at the trust to deliver a sustainable future for this astonishing building in partnership with the council. When Lord Lloyd-Webber visited it was clear he was impressed with the building and cultural regeneration of the area, seeing the positive impact that it has had on the whole of Halifax and beyond.
“We are confident that it will continue to lead the way as a fantastic example of a heritage building re-purposed for 21st Century use.”