In 2016, the Trustees and Elders of Westminster Chapel identified a need to optimise and modernise the Grade II listed Chapel for its existing and future use. Despite being one of a quartet of significant religious buildings in the City of Westminster, along with the Abbey, Cathedral and Methodist Central Hall, it was little known and lacking street presence. Therefore, one of the main objectives of the refurbishment was to increase activity and visibility throughout, whilst respecting and drawing upon the history of the site and the church.
The initial design and construction phase has taken significant steps to achieving this, through the removal of restrictive pews and installation of ramps to improve accessibility; entrance and foyer improvements, including a new café, to ensure a notable and welcoming street presence; and the opening up of the main auditorium to improve flow through the building. The new café, within and part of the auditorium but enclosed by a glazed screen, is a highlight, providing a space for the community and truly opening up the building for public use.
Webb Yates Engineers were the building services engineers for the project, designing sensitive interventions and improvements, delivered to tight budget and time constraints.
- AJ Architecture Awards 2023, Community and Faith Project (up to £2 million), shortlisted, 11 2023
- AJ Retrofit Awards 2023, Cultural and Religious Building (up to £5 million), shortlisted, 2 2023