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Next steps for County Hall

Published: 4 January 2024

At a meeting on 11 January 2024, our Cabinet will consider a report asking for approval to redevelop our headquarters at County Hall in Matlock.

After successfully engaging with developers and hotel operators and working with specialist architects HLM Architects and Realestateworks over the past year, a preferred option for the whole County Hall complex has been developed, which includes:

  • turning the south block of County Hall and the Winter Gardens into a hotel and events venue
  • creating new homes in the north block and the south west car park
  • building a new, low carbon office on the site to accommodate up to 500 council employees

During the summer of 2023 expressions of interest were sought from developers, hotel operators and others for their ideas on options for the future of the historic complex of buildings, and the information gained has been used to develop an outline business case, which Cabinet are set to consider.

Our overriding objective is to deliver the best outcome for the long-term use of the complex so that it contributes to the vitality of the town of Matlock and makes a significant ongoing contribution to the economy of the area. 

Deputy Council Leader, Councillor Simon Spencer, said:

“We had some very valuable insight from the hotel operators and developers following our engagement exercise last summer, and we’ve been able to use that information to develop a way forward.

“We want to give County Hall a new lease of life that will capitalise on the special nature of the historic buildings and the uniqueness of Matlock being on the fringe of one of the UK’s most popular tourist attractions – the Peak District.

“Our long-standing commitment to the town will remain. County Hall will become a building that will enhance the local economy. 130 new permanent jobs will be needed by the hotel, it also tackles the shortfall in quality hotel accommodation in the area and will bring an estimated boost of £56 million to the economy of Matlock, and £150 million to Derbyshire.

“Doing nothing with County Hall is not an option, the costs for running the building are just going up and up. The option that we are looking at will also save the council more than £130 million in repairs to the County Hall buildings and in decarbonisation costs.

“We held a briefing session this morning for all county councillors as I want to build a political consensus so that by working together we can make this project a success.”

If the proposals are approved work will continue over the coming months and years to develop the project.