Heritage design

Mather & Co’s Heritage Treasures.

Today marks Heritage Treasures Day, which is an annual online event where people are encouraged to highlight heritage objects, places, and stories across social media. Mather & Co are celebrating Heritage Treasure Day by showcasing our projects which we believe are truly ‘heritage treasures.

Heritage design

Adding to Manchester’s varied cultural scene

We are working with Manchester City Council to create a new attraction inside Manchester Town Hall, telling the story of the iconic building, which is considered one of the finest examples of neo-Gothic architecture in the UK.

The Town Hall, which formally opened in 1877, has been closed since 2018 while the Our Town Hall project – one of the biggest heritage schemes the UK has ever seen – is carried out.

The exhibition aims to open the famous building up to more visitors, so they can explore the architecture and history of the building and share in the story of the Town Hall. The design will inspire further exploration, repeat visitation, and connect with the people of Manchester in new ways.

Creating a thriving community hub at Shrewsbury Flaxmill Maltings

Mather & Co worked closely with Historic England and Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios on the regeneration of Shrewsbury Flaxmill Maltings – which is now a hub for the local community, where people can work, play, and learn.

Heritage design

Shrewsbury Flaxmill Maltings is home to eight special buildings each with a unique story to tell, including the 1797 Main Mill, which is internationally known as the grandparent of skyscrapers. At the height of production, more than 800 men, women, and children worked 15-hour shifts under the flaxmill roof.

This was not going to be a traditional heritage museum project, but a ‘factory of ideas’ designed to communicate the story of the site’s incredible 200-year history to new audiences, who may have never connected with heritage before. One of the obstacles that we encountered in the design stage was to showcase the heritage that the mill holds but also show it through a contemporary lens. Visitors are invited to think about the more challenging histories in the interpretation and even vote on particular questions about the site’s connection to Empire, working conditions, climate change, technology, pay, and labour.

Step into the world’s greatest love story at the Gretna Green Experience

Gretna Green has been welcoming weddings for over 260 years and is renowned as the home of runaway marriages. The Gretna Green Experience showcases the extraordinary love stories of those who wed at Gretna Green. Visitors enter the pages and illustrations of a storybook and watch as it unravels and tells the incredible history of the Famous Blacksmith Shop.

Heritage design

The Experience allows visitors to get up close to original objects including marriage registers, furniture, and the wedding dress of Dorothy Bell (grandmother of the owner). In the centre of the experience, visitors are immersed in a 360-degree audio-visual film, ‘The Unbreakable Bond’, that brings the history of the site to life around the original anvil.

Re-imagining a former prison into a world-class visitor attraction

Mather & Co are currently working on the transformation of Inverness Castle – which is due to open in 2025.

The visitor experience will utilise the very latest technology to excite the senses with full 360-degree immersion through audio, interactive and digital means. Within the Inverness Castle Visitor Experience, visitors will experience the Spirit of the Highlands through stories of Landscape (Cruth-tìre) Heritage (Dualchas), Culture (Cèilidh) and Community (Coimhearsnachd).

Guided with traditional Scottish storytelling, visitors will connect to Highland stories through a series of themed immersive rooms, where they can walk through forests, gather round the fire for story time, join in a cèilidh, and witness iconic moments of Highland and Island history.

Telling the whole story of Quarry Bank for the first time

We worked with the National Trust to redesign the complete Quarry Bank site with a new welcome building and six individual venues experiences. The site is now a flagship venue for the National Trust for interpretation and visitor experience.

Quarry Bank Mill has four floors of exhibition to explore and live demonstrations to watch and participate in. We used the threads of the cotton to guide people through the building. Our intricate warp and weft design in the first gallery cleverly weaves itself across the mill floor, creating pockets of exhibition display to tell the story of the site and operation.

On the upper floor we bring out the emotional story of the mill worker’s lives. The focal point of the zone is a sculpture constructed of ‘indentures’ the apprentices would have to sign to work at the Mill. People can investigate the individual lives of each worker around the edge and inside, experience the daily sounds, sights, and experiences of the workers in a sensory, immersive AV show.

Heritage design

Immersing people in the world of coin making at The Royal Mint Experience

We worked alongside the Royal Mint Museum to develop a new permanent visitor centre on site, with retail, learning and café spaces, and an exclusive behind-the-scenes factory tour.

We start the story right at the beginning, with the moneyer’s shop in the time of Alfred the Great. The story continues over 1,000 years of history, from the hand-crafted coins made at the Tower of London to the modern factory operation in Llantrisant today.

The Royal Mint Experience showcases its prestigious history and 1,100 years of manufacturing. Our displays allow people to get up close and learn the stirring stories of some of the most distinguished objects of The Royal Mint’s collection, including the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic medals, and service medals awarded to the gallant and brave.

Transforming Aberystwyth University Old College

We are currently working on the transformation of the Old College at Aberystwyth University, which aims to breathe new life into the historic building and create a vibrant cultural centre. The redevelopment of Old College is poised to become a magnetic hub, attracting an estimated 200,000 visitors annually, and acting as a catalyst for the regeneration of the surrounding area.

This transformative project will offer engaging activities that unlock the captivating stories and treasures from the University’s fascinating history, while dynamic programmes will expand horizons and knowledge in the realms of science, humanities, creativity, innovation, and enterprise.

Heritage design

Showcasing the rich history and story of Glencoe

Glencoe Museum houses a collection of over 3,000 artefacts chronicling daily life and work in the area between the 17th–21st centuries, from costume and household items to a “Coffin Boat” used to transport bodies to the local Burial Island, and even objects relating to the Jacobite rebellion and infamous Glencoe Massacre of 1692.

Our aim with this project is to provoke curiosity and to challenge visitors to expand their minds, to learn new things from the past, present, and future of Glencoe. We are looking forward to bringing together the voices of the communities and history and landscape of Glencoe and the surrounding area, offering surprises, unexpected twists and turns, and inspiring moments.

Glencoe Museum redevelopment is due to be completed in 2025.

If you have a heritage project that you would like to discuss with us, please get in touch!

E: info@matherandco.com

T: 01625 521 128