Bedlington, Northumberland

Runners up for mixed-use redevelopment competition of a 2.25 hectare plot in Bedlington town centre, Northumberland.

  • Client: Arch, The Northumberland Development Company
  • Master planning
  • Creative design solutions for residential, workspace, retail and food & beverage
  • Regeneration of prime town centre pitch
  • Visionary, design-led approach to achieve long-term commercial viability
More Information

Leslie Jones Architecture entered the design competition to redevelop a 2.25 hectare plot in Bedlington town centre, Northumberland. The competition – commissioned by Arch, The Northumberland Development Company and administered by Newcastle’s architecture centre, Northern Architecture – was launched in October 2015 to find an architecture practice to regenerate a neglected site at the heart of the town centre including a former Tesco superstore site.

Leslie Jones was one of only two practices on the final shortlist to provide Bedlington with a visionary design leader who will produce a deliverable plan for the site, which Tesco vacated in April and Arch purchased in July 2015.

Following an extensive urban analysis of Bedlington, looking at the historic urban context and existing use patterns of the town, Leslie Jones has delivered design solutions that will provide a viable and sustainable mix of residential, workspace, retail and food & beverage. The designs will also maximise sustainability and improve connectivity, walkability and social interaction, and provide frontages that will allow businesses to effectively engage with the public.

For the residential element, the practice has creatively proposed modern variants of the traditional terraced house to ensure the architecture remains sympathetic to the town’s existing urban character. All the houses have been designed to provide secure off-street parking, with private gardens and front and rear access. The designs include flats, which are also provided with private gardens or terraces. All dwellings will be designed to Lifetime Homes and Code for Sustainable Homes standards and to achieve BREEAM ‘Excellent’ ratings for environmental performance & sustainability.

To ensure the houses can become much-loved homes, the team has incorporated a new linear park with cafe pavilion on the surrounding area. The use of raised crossings and careful choice of sympathetic materials gives priority to pedestrians and cyclists.

The retail designs comprise a new 20,000 sq ft food store and a food & beverage offer fronting onto new, high quality public spaces to encourage a vibrant evening and night time economy.

The competition was set up to give momentum to Bedlington’s ambitions for regeneration while ensuring that local people could have a strong influence on the outcome.