L-R: Cllr Simon Henig, leader of Durham County Council and Neil Hosie, contracts manager at Kier.
Jane Imrie

Contractor named for “iconic” County Durham history hub development

Plans for a new interactive history hub in County Durham have moved forward with the appointment of a main contractor.

Durham County Council has confirmed Kier as the main developer on the local history hub scheme in Durham City.

As part of the project, Kier will restore the Grade II listed Mount Oswald Manor House to house archive, heritage, and registration services from across the county at a single location.

Scheduled for completion by autumn 2022, the hub will also include exhibitions showcasing the region’s history, search rooms, digital facilities, learning space as well as a café for visitors.

The project will also see the relocation of Durham Register Office from Aykley Heads to the site, offering enhanced facilities for weddings and civil ceremonies in the historic surroundings of the manor house.

Dan Doherty, regional director at Kier Regional Building North & Scotland, commented: “We are delighted to have been appointed to deliver this specialist project and continue our working relationship with Durham County Council.

“We have vast experience in restoring first-class refurbishments of Grade Listed properties and look forward to being part of this iconic scheme for County Durham.”

Cllr Simon Henig, leader of Durham County Council, added: “We are delighted that a main contractor has been appointed so that work can begin on the exciting new centre which will provide a unique gateway to explore the whole history of the county and its people.

“It will allow us to open up new spaces for residents and visitors to use and enjoy as well as providing a secure future for our important heritage collections.”

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