Building contractor announced for History Centre


History Centre team with History Centre building contractor

Left to right: Gareth Simmons (Programme Manager); Council Leader Ian Bowyer; Paul Brookes (Programme Director); Karen Brimicombe (Capital Lead); John Boughton (Director of Operations for Willmott Dixon); Dave Wood (Senior Bid Manager for Willmott Dixon) and Councillor Glenn Jordan (Cabinet Member for Culture).

History Centre partners have today announced the appointment of construction and regeneration specialist Willmott Dixon as the contractor for the project.

Willmott Dixon is one of the largest contracting companies in the UK with offices throughout England and Wales, yet it has remained a family-run business since its establishment in 1852.

The company, which recently opened a new office in Exeter, has successfully delivered many high quality building projects in a wide range of sectors including museums and archives, including fitting out a new home in London for the Design Museum and refurbishing the Victorian-era Alexandra Palace.

We will now work with Willmott Dixon through a pre-contract agreement to develop the building and construction elements of the project and prepare the site ready for a second-stage contract award later this autumn.

Willmott Dixon’s appointment is another major step forward for the History Centre project which will see the City Museum and Art Gallery, Central Library and St Luke’s Church buildings transformed into a brand new cultural and heritage attraction that highlights Plymouth and its place in the world. The centre is set to open in spring 2020 as part of Plymouth’s commemorations for Mayflower 400.

Councillor Ian Bowyer, Leader of Plymouth City Council said: “Willmott Dixon were awarded the contract after a highly competitive tender process and we’re really pleased to have them on board. As well as in-depth knowledge of the sector they demonstrated how they would inspire Plymothians to build for Plymouth and invest in the communities that support culture. This makes their appointment a great fit for the History Centre.”

Councillor Glenn Jordan, Cabinet Member for Culture said: “Willmott Dixon has a wealth of experience in helping to create buildings that are both functional and iconic. We were particularly impressed with their recent regeneration of a former Grade 2 listed building into a new home for the Gwent Records Office. This was a project that breathed new life into a property of more than 100 years old – so much like our ambitions for the History Centre.”

John Boughton, Director of Operations at Willmott Dixon said: “The History Centre is much more than a construction project – it’s an opportunity to help bring Plymouth’s past into the present and create a legacy for the future. We are so pleased to be part of the team that will make this a reality and will ensure our work benefits the local economy as much as possible by using local companies for work packages.”

To find out more about the project see our History Centre website or follow @loveourpast on Facebook and Twitter.