Upper Independent Chapel
The Upper Independent Chapel was a stunning conversion of a Grade 2* listed Chapel which was registered by the English Heritage as one of the 100 top buildings at risk. The building was derelict and had been ravaged by theft and vandalism. Because the once fabulous horse shoe gallery had been removed, and very little of the internal architecture remained, it actually provided us with the opportunity to be able to bring the building back to life as luxury apartments. The local Authority was very supportive of our efforts to breathe new life into such a spectacular and grandiose front façade.
With an effort to maximize space within the building, we undertook an exercise to provide an underground carpark at the lower ground level and to provide 30 luxury duplex apartments over 5 floors above. Our design was to utilise the tall windows of the chapel, creating duplex apartments with glazed internal balconies to the bedrooms and thus creating a feeling of space and light. The apartments all had individually designed and manufactured spiral staircases, made for us by a local company. The walls were all solid masonry providing a feeling of solidness and longevity.
In the roof we fitted conservation windows and provided 6 stunning penthouses. These were all unique in design and utilized the features that the roof timbers provided. In the dome, we installed a spiral staircase which led to a room which was to be used as a cinema room. The highlight of the development was the octagonal tower with its 8 windows providing 360 degree views over the town and the hills beyond. The floor within this tower was built from sheet glass to create a magnificent centerpiece to the development.
The construction work was undertaken by our dedicated team of crafts men, who lovingly work to produce a stunning conversion of an historical building. It is now hoped that as a development of stunning homes, we have saved the building for at least another 100 years.