Worthing Museum & Art Gallery
PROJECT BASICS: Strip Out & Refurb
Worthing Museum & Art Gallery, an iconic Edwardian building in the heart of Worthing, holds one of the largest and most significant costume collections in the UK. Its Costume Research Centre is used as a valuable resource by major national TV productions, large fashion houses and academics. Museum curators and culture team commissioned Warnes to redevelop parts of the building unseen and unappreciated to realise their full potential.
“…Warnes offered support, ideas and workable solutions. Using their immense knowledge and expertise, Warnes delivered a high-quality job, a resource for our community, our peers and one of national significance…”
SIMON GRAY, GENERAL MANAGER FOR OPERATIONS, WORTHING THEATRES, MUSEUM & ART GALLERY
One of the first stages of an ambitious masterplan to redevelop the museum was the costume research centre. We were given the job of creating an area befitting its important cultural legacy.
The challenge facing the museum was to do justice to the museum’s costume collection, moving it out of storage into a well-lit space, creating somewhere for people, whether students or designers, to come to ‘work’. This involved creating natural light where none existed previously, and to complement it with high-quality and specialist museum lighting, and to install two large cutting tables. Our challenge as contractors was to approach this work with sensitivity and to respect the nature of the building and its function.
To show our support for the museum and its future aspiration we submitted a comprehensive quote, set out with a complete schedule of work, broken down so that our customer and work team knew exactly what the project entailed.
We undertook an extensive survey prior to starting the project in order to avoid causing any damage to this Edwardian building. Our team approached the work in an attentive and methodical manner.
As General Manager at the Museum, Simon Gray, explained: “The people at Warnes clearly know their stuff. This wasn’t a big-budget project so it was reassuring to see the same level of commitment you might see on a much larger project. There were several strands to this work, and it went exceptionally well.”
Simon went on to say, in conclusion: “The space is utterly transformed from a cluttered area to one that feels light and airy. The amount of natural light we now have, and the galvanised metal appearance and finish has given us exactly what we aspired to. What struck me with Warnes was their skill and professionalism. Throughout the project they were open and transparent, communicated continually and effectively, and they were genuinely interested in the project.”