Structural work completed on former Crown Court building

13/01/2020, PR-9265

A major project to repair structural damage to one of Wakefield’s oldest and most historic landmark buildings is set to be completed this month.

Wakefield city centre

​Scaffolding on the former Crown Court building on Wood Street is being taken down, with the completion of work to repair the roof and shell of the building, making it waterproof and weather tight.

Cllr Darren Byford
Cllr Darren Byford

​Wakefield Council was forced to step in to safeguard the structure of the building after its previous owners abandoned it in an unsafe state.

 Cllr Darren Byford, Cabinet Member for Economic Growth and Skills, said: “This is an important step forward in protecting the future of this important Grade II listed building.
“I am proud that we have made the building safe, after the previous owners left it so badly damaged it had become unstable.
 
“Once the scaffolding has been fully removed people will be able to once again see this beautiful building, which is a key part of Wakefield’s heritage.”
 
The former Crown Court building is a key part of the Wakefield Civic Quarter Regeneration Area. The important historic area of the city and its transformation is a key priority for the city and the Council.
 
Wakefield Council has been actively marketing the site and is in talks with a number of developers who have put forward bids, which are being considered.

The former Crown Court Building is a Grade II listed building and the oldest civic building in Wood Street. It was built in 1810 although was later extended. It was in use as a court building until its closure in 1992 and was sold by the HM Courts to the private sector in 1994. Despite plans to restore and convert the premises by the previous owners, little work was undertaken, resulting in the building continuing to deteriorate. 

The severe deterioration of the building resulted in it being placed on Historic England's "at risk" register in July 2013. The Council acquired the property, made it safe and after assessing the severity of damage has now completed the essential repair work.