Chester Rows HAZ

In 2021 Recclesia was commissioned to undertake pre-contract survey work to the world famous historic Rows in Chester alongside Donald Insall Associates and Ramboll, for Cheshire West and Chester Council with funding from Historic England's Heritage Action Zone scheme. In 2022, we began work on an initial scheme of conservation-lead improvements working to a carefully planned programme to minimise disruption to the city centre.

If you're not familiar with Chester's Rows (and they're well worth visiting if you're not) they're a series of elevated walkways which stretch along the four principal streets of the city centre, each one meeting at The Cross at the very middle of the city. Along Bridge Street, Watergate Street, Eastgate Street and Northgate Street, the Rows form a second level of shop fronts on top of those at street level. With the walkways sitting above the shopfronts below, a second level of shops, cafes, bars and restaurants is tucked away in double-decker fashion, a feature which is unique to Chester.

The Rows elevated walkways by nature traverse 132 historic buildings, a mix of Grade I, Grade II* and Grade II architecture, which makes for a fascinating wander through styles, materials and detailing! It also makes for some complex project management, with over 300 businesses and residents forming part of the project! Recclesia has plenty of experience managing projects like this, where complex work has to be undertaken to ancient buildings in difficult locations - be that city centre locations like this, or ruins of a castle on top of a Welsh mountain.

Work on the first scheme of work will include extensive conservation and repair work to timber balustrades, plaster repairs to ceilings and walls, safety upgrades, an improved lighting scheme, and decoration work to ceilings, walls and stall boards.