Morpeth Railway Station is widely regarded as one of the finest surviving examples of Victorian railway architecture on the East Coast main line between London and Edinburgh.
The development has provided the station a new lease of life, and made it fit-for-purpose for 21st Century train travellers. Led by Greater Morpeth Development Trust (GMDT), a partnership of the National Lottery, Northumberland County Council, North East Rural Growth Network, the Railway Heritage Trust, and track and train operators Network Rail and Northern, has funded the £2.2 million scheme to repair, restore and redevelop the station. The scheme also converted empty rooms in the main station trackside building into a bespoke enterprise centre providing accommodation for up to seven small businesses.
As part of the improvements a cafeteria and modern toilets has been provided, while the ornate portico has been restored as a feature entrance to the station. A number of large chimney stacks which helped give the station its unique character, have also be restored
Vextrix undertook a key role in bringing together the rail industry and public sector partners, assisting both parties to work through statutory approvals and reporting mechanisms which are varied and complex throughout the different funding partners. This was a major benefit to the public sector partners and funders who had little knowledge of rail industry process and procedures. The knowledge brought to the team by Vextrix was instrumental in helping take the project from a feasibility study through to something that was approved for delivery by the rail industry, overseeing all design and construction consents and assisting with negotiation of funding and asset protection agreements. The project was completed on time and on budget.
We place high importance of architectural input to maintain the integrity of the development. Maintaining a guardian of design is also important to maintain the quality of specification. Maintaining communication with station operators ensures the programme runs smoothly.
Vextrix proved more than capable of delivering what was a complex refurbishment of a listed building in our behalf. Their commitment to good account management, their pragmatic approach and regular communication really helped us understand and work through key issues the scheme was facing at various stages of the project. Their commitment to us, particularly through the lengthy development stages of the scheme as we secured funding really helped us bring our project to fruition.