One of the most historically significant buildings in the North East of England continues to thrive after an interior overhaul transformed it into a hub for fine dining, weddings, events and office accommodation.
For over 200 years Acklam Hall was home to the Hustler family before becoming a school shortly before the Second World War. The building stood empty for six years before work began in October 2014 to restore the Grade I Listed Hall into a flexible destination for work and pleasure.
Since opening in February 2016, Acklam Hall has received widespread praise from visitors and now boasts three RICS (North East) Award nominations. Speaking to Premier Construction, Director Martin Williams discussed the origins and subsequent success of Acklam Hall:
“The hall had been empty for about six years before we started the refurbishment and was in relatively good condition from a structural point of view. We had to do significant works to the elevations and the roof due to water ingress. Simple things like blocked gutters were causing significant damage. The previous owners had kept the heating on whilst the building was empty which was a huge help.”
Now a versatile destination, visitor numbers to the hall continue to rise. The Brierley restaurant offers two differing culinary experiences in the form of The Salon and The Dining Room. The Salon is open all-day for breakfast, lunch and dinner while the more formal Dining Room offers afternoon tea and a fine dining menu using local ingredients.
Office accommodation ranges in size from 2 to 10 desks alongside a dedicated reception, robust IT system and a range of meeting and conferencing facilities.
DH Multi Services specialise in all aspects of hard and soft landscaping, offering a complete end-to-end landscaping service for businesses and domestic clients throughout the North East. Working on Acklam Hall, DH Multi Services was involved with the construction of the building’s large patio area, located to the side of the hall, which provides a fantastic area for guests to sit and enjoy a drink.
DH Multi Services were also responsible for the construction of the pond in the formal garden area, numerous paved paths around the hall, the installation of the wrought iron estate fencing to the front of the site and other various aspects of landscaping including general garden maintenance works, pond clearance, tree works and more.
David Hymas, DH Multi Services, said:
“We were keen to be involved in the Acklam Hall restoration project as it is the only Grade I listed building in Middlesbrough, and history is of great interest to us. We like to see buildings and their surrounds returned to their former glory and we were pleased to help provide a great space for the local community to use for business and pleasure.”
Since the project completed, Acklam Hall has also been able to utilise its stunning backdrop to become a sought after wedding venue and destination for other celebrations and events.
“Feedback on the interior and the look has been extremely positive. Across the board, from people who had never been inside to ex-pupils, visitors really like what we have done with the building. I think for the ex-pupils it triggers memories of being at school and it’s very satisfying to see people’s reactions.
“It’s very flattering to have been nominated. It has taken a lot of hard work at significant risk to get this far so to have an organisation like the RICS acknowledge what we’ve done is very humbling.”
In total Acklam Hall has been shortlisted in three categories – Building Conservation, Commercial and Tourism and Leisure.