Arts Park (Phase 1)

This project will secure a local charity Newhampton Art Centre (NAC) to remain and continue delivering a vital service for the community and wider audience, in a local listed building located within Whitmore Reans, just north of the Wolverhampton ring road, a five-minute walk from the city centre.

The school that occupied the older buildings on the site closed in 1989 and the site was developed by City of Wolverhampton Council and City of Wolverhampton College as a joint creative industries and creative education site.

The programme managed by NAC has a number of elements: approximately 120 live music and theatre events per year in the theatre and New Horizons stage tent, weekly courses and classes, a community and education programme and activities run by its resident artists/ organisations (of which there are about twenty). Courses and classes include subjects as varied as youth theatre, yoga, ESOL, visual art and keep fit.

The last significant capital investment in the site came twenty years ago in the development that brought NAC into being. Since then, investment has been limited to routine maintenance.

The building is now in urgent need of further significant capital investment. As well as the urgent requirement to update and replace major building services installations (e.g. boilers), fittings at the end of their life and major fabric repairs, the time is ripe to architecturally appraise the whole site and buildings in view of its current uses, given that the site is being used for purposes and to an extent never envisaged 25 years ago.

Aims of the project

This initial investment will enhance and strengthen the presence of the NAC, using the multi-space site to boost the city’s economy and also deliver a much-needed community outreach service and facility that can be more accessible and attractive to more diverse user groups.

Key milestones

  • Design & Stakeholder Development - Q1 2023 – Q2 2024
  • Renovation Phase 1 commence - Q4 2023
  • Phase 1 Project completion - Q2 2024