The £8.5 million refurbishment of Trowbridge’s historic Town Hall has reached a key milestone as work begins.

Wiltshire Council has contracted Beard Construction to deliver the extensive remodelling and refurbishment programme which is likely to take two years.

Beard Construction is a multi award-winning construction company that designs, builds, restores and refurbishes buildings in Southern England.

The company, which has offices in Swindon, Bristol, Oxford and Guildford, will lead the refurbishment works on the Grade II listed building ensuring its future as a hub of activity at the heart of the town.

Similar projects undertaken by Beard include the complete refitting of the Grade II listed Mill Building at Trowbridge Museum, and the sensitive refurbishment of the Grade II listed Corsham Mansion, including a new build extension to create facilities for business office support and training.

 The company also handled the highly-sensitive building refurbishment and extension of the multi-award-winning Corinium Museum in Cirencester which has doubled exhibition space and improved visitor facilities.

Cllr Phil Alford, Wiltshire Council’s Cabinet Member for Strategic Assets, said: “We are delighted to be working with a renowned local company such as Beard Construction.

“Their extensive knowledge of working sensitively on historic buildings will ensure the Town Hall remains a landmark community asset for future generations to treasure.

“A key aim in our Business Plan is making sure our towns are resilient, ensuring our communities are able to grow sustainably with access to leisure, arts, heritage and culture.

“The investment in the Town Hall forms part of the £16 million awarded to Wiltshire Council from the government’s Future High Streets Fund.

“The refurbishment of this much-loved building is central to developing a unique cultural offer in the town, encouraging increased footfall into the town centre and helping to revive Trowbridge’s evening economy.”

Jamie Harwood, director at Beard Construction in Swindon, said: “We are proud to be supporting the Trowbridge community once again and playing our part in safeguarding the future of the historic Town Hall.

“We will call upon our expertise in the heritage sector and with complex listed buildings to ensure the Town Hall will continue to support the community for many more generations to come.

“We’re confident we can deliver the necessary changes to realise the council’s exciting vision, bringing the quality of construction Beard has become synonymous for over our 130+ year history.”

Alan Wright, the Director of Trowbridge Town Hall Trust, added: “Having worked so closely with the build design team over the past 18 months, aligning the restoration work to our vision for the building, we now hand over the responsibility for the completion of that work to Beard Construction in the knowledge that they share our passion for this beautiful building and have the expertise to transform it into something the whole of Trowbridge will be proud to celebrate when we re-open our doors again in 2025.”

The town hall closed at the end of July and work on the redevelopment project is expected to start soon. It is scheduled for completion in the summer of 2025.

It will include performance and activity spaces, recording studios and a licenced café bar with refurbished spaces for a wide range of community activities from yoga classes to toddler groups.

The Trowbridge Town Hall refurbishment is central to developing a unique cultural offer in the town, encouraging increased footfall into the town centre and helping to revive Trowbridge’s poor evening economy offering.

The rest of the £16.3 million is being spent on breathing new life into Trowbridge town centre properties by encouraging people to live and work there, and improving access for pedestrians and cyclists.