University gets permission to transform former chapel into new hall for graduations

The former chapel, pictured in June

Nottingham Trent University has been granted permission to transform a former chapel into a new hall for graduation ceremonies and performances.

The former Wesleyan Chapel on Shakespeare Street was bought by NTU earlier this year with the view to converting it into use as University Hall.

The original building, most recently used as a synagogue, was constructed in 1854 with a large rear extension was added in 1976.

The plans recently received approval from Nottingham City Council.

Chief operating officer at NTU Steve Denton said: “We are pleased the plans have been approved and that work can commence on transforming and preserving this fantastic building.

“NTU is the ideal guardian for this building and will ensure its long term care.

“We have proved our sensitive and award winning approach to restoring important buildings with the transformation of 50 Shakespeare Street and our iconic Arkwright building.”

The Royal Concert Hall, the traditional venue for students’ graduation ceremonies.

At the front of the chapel, facing Shakespeare Street, an enlarged foyer will be provided for the listed building using solid glass screens to bring in light.

A new stained glass window is planned for the front of the building, depicting the university’s crest.

Local architecture and construction consultancy YMD Boon has worked on the plans to replace this modern extension with a striking new space to be used as a music centre and dining area.

Director at YMD Boon David Yates said: “Nottingham Trent University is an important contributor to the cityscape.

“The venue will enhance music facilities and performance opportunities for the student population but critically, the stunning venue will revolutionise the launch of huge numbers of students into the next phases of their careers.

“This is a challenging project which is set to achieve the sympathetic restoration of the chapel and introduce state of the art modern facilities that will be used and enjoyed for generations to come.”