First design revealed for £4.5m Vestry House Museum redevelopment

Image: Vestry House Museum, London Borough of Waltham Forest

Supported by Waltham Forest Council’s Leveling up Fund, the London museum is expected to reopen in 2026.

Plans for the £4.5 million redevelopment of Vestry House Museum have moved forward, as Waltham Forest Council announces the appointment of an architecture firm to lead on the project.

London architectural practice Studio Weave will lead the transformation of the local history museum into a “heritage destination” with a “culture and heritage offer that more fully reflects the borough’s diversity”.

The project is supported by the council’s Levelling Up Fund programme, and will see work begin in early 2024 with a planned reopening date for the Museum at the start of 2026.

The museum will close on 23 December 2023 in preparation for the works to begin.

Vestry House historic entrance reimagined, Studio Weave 2023.

The project includes the relocation of museum storage offsite, to facilitate improvements to the accessibility of the museum, as well as creating space for creative workspaces, community curation and programming, along with heritage hubs across the borough.

The archives and local studies library will move to a larger and more accessible space in nearby Walthamstow Library in early 2024.

Once fully operational, the museum is expected to welcome up to 80,000 visitors and up to 60 school visits annually, and provide 60 training and employment opportunities for local young people.

Councillor Ros Doré, Cabinet Commissioner for Culture, LB Waltham Forest said: “We are thrilled to be working with Studio Weave on the revitalisation of Vestry House Museum. Their work on Lea Bridge Library shows they have the sensitivity and expertise to work with us to bring new life to this important historic asset, making it more accessible, inclusive and exciting for all the borough’s residents to enjoy.”