Ipswich Borough Council moves forward with Museum redevelopment

21 May 2024

A key construction phase in the redevelopment work on Ipswich Museum will start at the end of this month.

Ipswich Borough Council is undertaking a significant project to restore, refurbish and improve the purpose-built Grade II* listed building. The much-needed redevelopment will enhance its exterior and interior, preserving its current character and Victorian architecture, and refurbishing the existing galleries to display more of the town’s collections for visitors to enjoy.

The Council has now appointed Ipswich-based award-winning contractors Gipping Construction to carry out the crucial base-build construction elements of the redevelopment. That encompasses improvements to the ‘shell and core’ of the Museum including main structural components such as the walls, floors and façade as well as the installation of mechanical and supply systems for new heating, insulation and lighting to significantly improve the building’s environmental performance.

The contractors are due to move in during week commencing 27th May to begin this phase of redevelopment, with those works likely to take a year to complete.

Councillor Carole Jones, Ipswich Borough Council’s portfolio holder for Parks and Museums, says:

“Many necessary improvements needed to happen for Ipswich Borough Council to keep providing access to such an exceptional late Victorian building for visitors, whilst maintaining its Grade II* listed features.

“Gipping Construction has a wealth of experience in the field and brings an abundance of knowledge to the table. They have won awards in their project management, green buildings, and craftsmanship along with other areas of heritage expertise. Having this prior knowledge and understanding is something integral to Ipswich Borough Council in order to preserve the Museum’s unique features, inside and out.

“Once the key base-build construction phase is completed, other planned redevelopment works at the Museum will continue as part of the larger ongoing project to enhance and redisplay Ipswich’s internationally significant collections. When Ipswich Museum reopens, visitors can expect a beautifully restored museum that can be enjoyed for generations to come.”

Gipping Construction’s prior experience of working with and refurbishing Grade II listed buildings includes Woodbridge Quay Church and The Row. The company has also worked closely with National Trust projects at Sutton Hoo, Flatford Mill and Thorrington Cottage. During these projects, many artefacts and grounds were preserved throughout to maintain their historic importance within the sites.

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