Council issues update on exciting proposals for the Treasure House in BeverleyWed 21st June 2023
It is hoped that work will start in September on the exciting transformation of the Treasure House in Champney Road in Beverley.
The £3.3 million scheme includes a new customer service centre and enhanced library, and a new location within the building for the reference library, while the council’s registration services will relocate there from Walkergate House. There will be a new Changing Places facility, and Champney Gardens will also be landscaped.
The new complex will be known as the Champney Treasure House, after John Champney, a Beverley businessman and benefactor, who made his fortune in the textile industry. He donated money for the Beverley Public Library and in 1929 he bequeathed numerous paintings to the Art Gallery's collection - mainly works by contemporary British artists.
During the construction period, the whole of the Treasure House will be closed for a period of up to a year. Beverley Library will be temporarily relocated across the road in County Hall, and the Tourist Information Centre will be temporarily moved to the Customer Service Centre. East Riding Archives will be available online for a variety of enquiries and requests for document copies. Regular updates, including online content, will be available from Beverley Art Gallery, including 'behind the scenes' collection projects and planning for future displays and exhibitions, continuing the work of the Art Gallery during the closure period.
Services provided at the current register office at Walkergate House will remain unchanged until the work is completed. Anyone planning a register office wedding in Beverley for 2024 and beyond should talk to Registrar staff who can advise about the excellent facilities that will be available in the new Champney Treasure House.
In the autumn, work is expected to start on an attractive landscaping scheme in the gardens to complement the new-look building, designed to make the gardens a more attractive and welcoming place to visit for everyone.
As the new building will house the town’s register office, the gardens will become an ideal location for wedding groups and for photographs to be taken.
The upgrade will include many new seating areas, a sundial, and new pergolas – one for residents to walk through with climbing foliage overhead - and the others providing ideal seating areas.
The garden is also aimed at improving the environment with plenty of new planting and bedding, a biodiverse lawn, areas designed to encourage insects and wildlife, new sights and scents on offer, and also an information board to explain the history of the gardens.
Before the closure, Beverley Art Gallery is currently hosting the touring exhibition, ‘Matisse- Drawing with Scissors’ until 1 July, and will then host ‘Brick Journeys’, an exhibition for the whole family from 15 July until 26 August. All other services and facilities in the Treasure House will continue as normal until the closure, including events in Beverley Library.
Councillor Anne Handley, leader of the council, said: “The Champney Treasure House scheme is aimed at improving the library in Beverley and creating a new cultural hub for the town, whilst also rationalising our assets and getting better value for money for our residents. It will be largely funded by the sale of our buildings in Cross Street and Walkergate House.
“We will significantly improve Champney Gardens, and offer excellent facilities in a new location for customers and staff of our registration services. I look forward to seeing these wonderful new facilities at the completion of the project.”