Stockport’s Grade II listed Bank Chambers, built in 1868, once again opens its doors this week following extensive renovation and restoration works by Hall & Co Property.
Previously empty, the iconic building is now home to Stockport’s first dedicated co-working space, ProFolk, created to support new and small businesses with beautiful, professional workspace and the chance to be part of a vibrant new creative and collaborative community.
The painstaking transformation was completed in nine months. It saw the restoration of numerous original features, including stained glass windows, marble columns, ceiling rose, bank vaults and fireplaces, whilst adding new features such as air conditioning, mood lighting, a passenger lift, flat screen TV’s and a speaker system.
Designed by award-winning architecture practice, Ollier Smurthwaite, it’s a seamless blend of old and new, creating a striking, light-filled working environment and preserving one of the town’s most important heritage assets.
Located in Stockport town centre, close to the train station and bus routes, ProFolk offers a mix of hot-desking, co working and private offices. Coupled with meeting rooms and event space, plus amenities including showers, lockers, bike racks and 1GB internet speeds, Hall & Co has seen strong early interest from prospective tenants.
Jamie Hall, Project Director at Hall & Co Property, said: “Grade II listed and benefiting from a rich history, Bank Chambers is one of Stockport’s most important heritage assets. We have carefully restored its original features, which now sit side by side with modern additions and fresh finishes, resulting in an impressive space with bucket-loads of character.
“Stockport benefits from a thriving network of freelancers, entrepreneurs and small businesses who – until now – haven’t had the benefit of modern, collaborative workspace. ProFolk has really raised the bar and we hope it’ll help those based here to do the same, working together to grow as part of a vibrant new community.”
The renovation was completed, in part, thanks to a development loan provided by Cheadle-based specialist lender, Together.
Jonathan Sally, lending director at Together, said: “It’s been fantastic to see the transformation of this historic building over the past few months. Hall & Co and Ollier Smurthwaite had ambitious plans to bring the property back into use and we’re happy to have provided the finance for them to realise their vision.
“They’ve done a magnificent job in preserving original features, while creating a modern co-working space that’s bound to be popular with the district’s SMEs and start-up businesses.”
Caroline Simpson, Corporate Director for Place at Stockport Council, said: “I’m delighted that this beautiful Grade II listed building has been given a new lease of life after being vacant for several years. The introduction of co-working space in the heart of the Market Place complements the sea of change that has recently taken place, with the opening of several food and beverage and retail establishments.
“Stockport is continuing to attract private investment from a variety of different businesses, and it’s clear that they are buying into our ambitious plans, such as the revitalised Market Place and Underbanks, new Transport Interchange, Stockport Exchange and Merseyway.”
Hall & Co Property is a family-run property development company, benefiting from more than 20-years’ experience operating multi-use office space.