Listed Building Refurbishment for Stevenage School

Building and refurbishment specialist Conamar has completed the refurbishment of the Grade II* listed Maltings at The Thomas Alleyne Academy in Stevenage, transforming a disused building into a new reception, offices and drama studio.

The 160 sq m (525 sq ft), one storey building sits at the perimeter of the school site and had been unoccupied for decades. It is a timber, Tudor-style construction dating back to the 16th Century with uneven dimensions, angled windows and sloping doorframes – and listing requirements mean that refurbishment works cannot touch or damage any part of the frame.

Over seven weeks, Conamar subdivided its interior, creating a new drama studio in one third of the building and installing perimeter walls and ceilings across the rest of the space to create a new, modern reception area, offices for the senior team, medical room and kitchen. Bespoke windows and external doors were created by its in-house team at MC Joinery and new gates have been installed to create a new entrance to the school so students, staff and visitors can avoid the car park area when they arrive and leave.

A major focus for delivery was the mechanical and engineering element of the project, in particular bringing plumbing and electricity across from elsewhere on the site without damaging the listed building and ensuring that everything worked properly. As a result the Maltings has now become the Academy’s technical hub as well as its administrative centre.

Mark Lewis, Managing Director of The Hart Schools Trust, said: “We are delighted with the work Conamar have completed to bring such an important part of our historic estate back into use. The restoration has sensitively retained the character of the original building whilst also ensuring it meets our current working requirements. We look forward to using this wonderful building for many years to come.”

Neil Dower, Managing Director at Conamar said: “The Maltings is a fine building with a great deal of character but it had been on the English Heritage ‘Buildings at Risk Register’ for many years. Even though working with listed properties brings with it challenges – especially when it comes to installing state-of-the-art technology inside a historic frame – we were very pleased to play our part in successfully bringing it back into use.”