The second phase of public consultation gets underway today on proposals for Kirklees Cultural Heart, the £210 million development scheme that would transform the heart of Huddersfield town centre.

The Cultural Heart forms part of the wider Huddersfield Blueprint – Kirklees Council’s ambitious ten-year vision to create a thriving, modern-day town centre for Huddersfield.  However, by redefining Huddersfield town centre, the aim is also to position this area as a thriving economic driver within West Yorkshire, bringing great benefits for Kirklees as a whole.

The proposals for the Kirklees Cultural Heart aim to breathe new life and activity into the area between Queensgate, King Street and Victoria Lane – currently known as the Piazza – which has seen decreasing footfall in recent years.

The plan involves refurbishing the historic Queensgate Market and Huddersfield Library buildings to house a vibrant new food hall and a dedicated museum space respectively. A new community-focussed library will be developed within a modern extension to the market building, while a brand-new art gallery will be built on Queen Street. 

Elsewhere, a new multi-purpose entertainment venue, which will have a capacity of up to 2,200 people, is being designed to host major concerts, live shows, business conferences, trade shows and more. Below the venue will be a multi-storey car park with around 350 spaces. 

Helping to connect all the new developments will be a series of highly accessible and attractive public spaces, including a public square that can host regular community and cultural events, and a new urban park, which features play space for families and various types of seating and relaxation spots for all generations.

Phase one of the Cultural Heart consultation took place throughout May and June earlier this year. This first phase saw over 3,750 people engage online and over 200 people attend the dedicated in-person exhibition space.

63% of respondents said that – based on what they had seen so far – they were supportive of the proposals for the Cultural Heart. Respondents were particularly supportive of making the town centre a more welcoming, inclusive and accessible destination for people with different needs, as well as maintaining the heritage assets such as the market building and current library building.

Having taken on board the official feedback from local businesses and residents, the latest versions of the plans – including a series of brand-new visuals – are now available to view and comment on. This second phase of consultation runs until Wednesday 14 September 2022, with the potential for a formal planning application to be submitted to the Local Planning Authority this autumn.


Councilor Shabir Pandor, Leader of Kirklees Council, said:

“We were thrilled with the amount of engagement we received through the first phase of consultation, because this is how local residents and businesses can really shape the future of Kirklees.  Those who shared their views will hopefully see we’ve used the feedback to shape these new, more advanced designs.

“Our town centre, like many across the UK, needs to adapt to changing shopping habits and challenging market conditions. Retail still has a key role to play in our future, but making our town centres more vibrant and varied will help encourage more people to not just visit the town centre but stay there for longer, which in turn supports new and existing shops, bars and restaurants.

“An investment like the Cultural Heart is an investment for all of Kirklees and we are excited to deliver an amazing new landmark that our people can be proud of.”


George Wilson, Partner at Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios (the scheme’s lead architect), says:

“Our vision for Kirklees Cultural Heart is deeply rooted in Huddersfield and the wider borough. The design celebrates the architectural character of Kirklees and the site’s surrounding civic buildings, whilst also introducing some complementary modern materials to create an exciting and contemporary destination for all.”


Kirklees residents and businesses are encouraged to view and comment on the plans here:

In addition to online channels, the council is facilitating a pop-up consultation exhibit in the Piazza, which will be open to the public for two hours every weekday throughout the consultation and on Saturday 10 September. The public can also speak with the architects directly in extended sessions focussing on the proposed outdoor public spaces (25-27 August) and the building designs (6-7 September).

For more information, please visit the website or get in touch with the consultation team at or phone 0808 175 4300.