We are pleased to have been selected to manage a historic apartment building located in West Yorkshire, United Kingdom. Originally constructed in 1890, the Upper Independent Chapel was built on High Street in Heckmondwike as the fourth chapel erected by the Congregational denomination. Designated a Grade II* listed historic building, the chapel has since been converted into residential apartments while maintaining its historical integrity.
The adjacent Sunday School building, constructed in 1856 with a Grade II designation, continues to serve as a chapel for the United Reformed Church. An inscription on the pediment reads “INDEPENDENT DAY AND SABBATH SCHOOLS ANNO DOMINI 1856.” Regrettably, the interior of the Sunday School building was previously altered despite its protected historical status, which is intended to preserve significant interior features. While not an establishment of the Church of England, the chapel originally served the aspirations of its builders to be considered equally as important. Some may have mistakenly associated the chapel with the Church of England due to theological disputes during the 19th century.
The chapel has persevered through changes in ownership that primarily viewed it as a physical structure rather than an important community institution. For congregants, the building remains significant and worthy of preservation as one of two surviving Grade II listed structures in Heckmondwike. The local authority deserves recognition for refusing demolition permits despite criticism, allowing the chapel to continue serving the community.
The luxury apartments appeal to professionals and students, maintaining full occupancy. This new management agreement adds to our growing portfolio of contracts across Yorkshire, with several more planned over the coming months.
James Priestley, Director at Valor Properties’ Leeds office, commented, “It is an honor to take on management of this historic building in a desirable area, complementing our expanding portfolio. The Independent Upper Chapel at Heckmondwike is a beautifully preserved example of religious architecture converted for new uses while respecting its past. We are proud to be stewarding the development and look forward to our continued growth.”
By Bethany Nicol | February 2nd 2024 | Property Manager