West Yorkshire Archive Wakefield


Broadway Malyan




Bardsley Construction Ltd

Bardsley construction was awarded this prestigious contract to complete the design and undertake the construction of the new £6.4m West Yorkshire Joint Services Archive building. Longworth were appointed as the Envelope Contractor.


Rainscreen Cladding and building envelope

Longworth’s envelope package consisted of Proteus aluminium rainscreen cladding panel with bespoke perforations including full build up and the Permatec hot melt flat roof and PV system.

The building was constructed on the site of the former Crown House Building on the corner of Kirkgate and Brunswick Street in Wakefield and undertaken adjacent the re-generation works near to the Kirkgate train station.

The new development will house collections which were previously held in the old Registry of Deeds building in Newstead Road, Wakefield, which is no longer fit for purpose.

The design of the scheme has been undertaken by Broadway Malyan Architects who have worked closely with the Main Contractor, Bardsley, developing the design providing the new three storey archive facility consisting of ground floor offices, together with communal and exhibition space to enable a  wide-reaching programme of events, courses and opportunities to connect people with local and family history as well as two further floors of dedicated archive space to provide over 2000m2 of secure and stable environment to store over 10million records, housing the collections of the former counties of West Yorkshire and the West Riding, as well as those in the Wakefield district.

The iconic concrete frame building has been encased in a perforated aluminium rainscreen cladding system from Proteus. It features prominent external lighting which given its prominent location will ensure that the building will be well seen. It is intended to act as a focal point for people entering the city from the south.

Building work commenced on site in March 2015 and was completed in the early spring of 2016. It is hoped that the new facility will encourage members of the public to explore the services available within the facility and become a welcoming place where groups can meet and discuss their interest in heritage.

Funding for the project was provided partly by Heritage Lottery Funding with the remaining funding being shared by the five local authorities of West Yorkshire.

Bardsley appointed Longworth as the envelope contractor for this most prestigious project. Longworth have a long standing relationship with Bardsley Construction and this project was high on their agenda to secure.

There were many challenges and triumphs met with equal force throughout the project. The exacting setting out of the perforations to form the specific patterns on the external façade were within millimetre tolerances. The structure to support the Proteus rainscreen cladding panels at the arrow head of the building needed bespoke design in order to provide a solid and long lasting structure.

Longworth worked to a tight programme when working on site due to the amount of time the Proteus rainscreen cladding panels spent in fabrication.

The construction phase went through a full winter which made the laying of the Permatec Hot Melt roof a particularly tricky challenge. Longworth’s operatives had to battle through the elements to make sure the project stayed on programme. The project was managed by Longworth’s Senior Contract Manager, Lee Smith.

The roof had a tapered parapet which caused an irregular shadow path throughout the day. This could have caused problems for the Solar PV system. Longworth performed a shade analysis in CAD to provide the best area for the solar system without impacting on its performance.

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  • Proteus aluminium rainscreen panel with bespoke perforations
  • Proteus bracket and mullion support system
  • SFS Intec fixings to concrete
  • Flat Roof Permatec Hot melt
  • Solar PV 134 no. 265W modules 35.5kWP
  • Ubbink FRS60 flat roof mounting system
  • Photographs courtesy of Andrew Dixon Photography

What our clients say

"We’re really pleased with the proactive effort put in by Longworth to ensure the desired quality is achieved. The building is well received by everyone and regarded as a success."

Husnee Jamalluddin - Associate, Halsall Lloyd Partnership