Project: Bingham Methodist Centre

Client: Bingham Methodist Church

Completed: 2017

Budget: £1.6M

The congregation decided that the previous Wesleyan church & hall in Bingham was no longer fit for purpose; the original chapel was inflexible for modern worship and later extensions were poorly connected, making it difficult to cater for wider community use. The development of the retail area of the town centre over the years had also resulted in the original church building facing away from the heart of the community. Because of our expertise they approached us to look at the options for redevelopment. It is not often that an opportunity comes about to design a new church. The challenge lies in reimagining what a church might look like whilst interpreting the needs of the church both now and in years to come. We were able to explore the design of the new church with the church development group using our 3D modelling software. Some of the visuals are included in the images above.  

The church’s objectives were straightforward; to provide a new church and community building on the existing historic town centre site that provided both flexibility and stability for the future needs of the church. This provided an exciting opportunity to create a multi-use scheme, incorporating  both retail & commercial uses into the building in order to provide a source of revenue for the church. The result of this is two generous retail units accessed from the shopping precinct with flexible office accommodation above. Leasing these business units affords the church the security of regular income whilst providing the option for future expansion should the needs of the church grow. Significant wider community benefits also arise from this, with the building anticipated to act as a catalyst for further regeneration of the existing shopping precinct.

The building houses its functions under a simple, single roof. The worship space is the focus of the scheme, taking a striking, elliptical form which sits on a prominent corner of the site. The commercial functions of the building are positioned on the opposite side and are visually linked through the simple palette of materials; buff & black brickwork with panels of render & oak boarding providing contrast. 

At first floor, three large multi purpose spaces afford the church with increased community-use opportunities; providing flexibility to accommodate previous users whilst attracting new community groups & activities. The smaller of the rooms, used for the crèche & Junior Church during services, overlooks the worship space through slender slot windows, providing children with a visual connection with their parents in the worship space below.

After many years and considerable efforts on the part of the church to secure funding, the project came into fruition to the delight of the church development team - Peter Broekhuizen “We here at Bingham Methodist Centre salute you and your team for making the 15 year dream a reality”. The project won the regional award and was also a finalist in the National LABC “Best Public Service Building ” in 2017.