Former bus station wins national award

Whitehaven bus station
Whitehaven bus station

A once-derelict bus station transformed as part of a multimillion-pound regeneration has won a national award.

The building, in Whitehaven, Cumbria, reopened as a business hub in 2021 after an £8.2m redevelopment.

The renovation has received an award for "outstanding impact" from the Institute of Economic Development (IED).

Gary McKeating from Sellafield Ltd, which contributed £5.7m to the project, said the company was "delighted" with the recognition.

Head of development and community at Sellafield Ltd, Mr McKeating said it "underlines how more can be achieved by working in partnership, and how our impacts are multiplied when we collaborate".

The hub had "exceeded all of our expectations in terms of occupancy and impact", he added.

Technology access

Sellafield said the building had been transformed into a "dynamic collaboration environment" intended to support business start-ups and entrepreneurs with co-working spaces and meeting rooms.

It also offered access to equipment such as 3D-printers and laser and vinyl cutting tools, the company said.

The IED "outstanding impact" category - part of their annual awards programme - is open to projects completed in the past five years which fall under the classification of environmental, social and business support, rural development or regeneration.

Norfolk County Council and Wakefield Council were also shortlisted this year.

In August, plans were announced for a music hub in a disused warehouse at the Whitehaven site.

Should the planning application be successful, the hub will be run by the charity Soundwave encouraging young people to get involved in making music.

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