The multi-million pound redevelopment of Ealing Town Hall has been agreed by planners. Councillors have approved Mastcraft as the preferred development partner for the neo-gothic building.

The building’s two most iconic rooms, the Victoria Hall and Council Chamber will be preserved as part of an 18-month extensive refurbishment to reconfigure the underused building. The council would retain the east wing of the building for civic use and marriage ceremonies with part of the west wing turned into a boutique hotel.

In addition to the ongoing use of the Victoria Hall, there could be a further eight areas within the building available for public hire.

As part of the west wing hotel development there could be a restaurant, health and fitness centre, 4th floor roof terrace and a ground level cocktail bar with bistro leading out to Dickens Yard.  If the necessary planning permissions and consents are granted, the new look town hall and hotel could be reopened in early 2019.

The developer has made a commitment to recruit local people to work on the build and to work in the hotel once opened. The council will also ensure that the development partner offers apprenticeships to local young people.

Councillor Julian Bell, leader of Ealing Council, said: “Ealing is fast becoming one of the capital’s most sought after areas with a town centre that combines the best of modern with traditional design. By attracting new investment to the area, our community is benefiting from new jobs, improved leisure and shopping facilities as well as much needed homes.  Ealing Town Hall is a magnificent building that is well-loved locally but like all historic buildings it is very expensive to maintain and repair and is in considerable need of refurbishment. It is essential that we leave a legacy that assures its future at the civic heart of our community so that it can continue to accommodate a range of democratic, community and commercial activities that contribute to Ealing’s economic and cultural life in the 21st century and beyond. I am determined to find a way to preserve this historic building as a lasting legacy for the people of the borough while reducing the burden on council tax payers.”

To select the development partner the council undertook a procurement process that scored proposals against a set of criteria including: design and heritage refurbishment; provision of the space for democratic use and public hire; delivery of the scheme; long-term management and maintenance; financial strength and business plan; and financial return to the council.