Leeds nostalgia: WIll Templar House be saved?

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Templar House on Lady Lane, near to where The Headrow meets with the A61 Eastgate road, has a long and distinguished history.

The building itself has important links to Methodism. It was built in 1840 as the principal chapel in Yorkshire of the Wesleyan Methodist Association.

The red-brick building held 1700 worshippers and fetured a schoolroom below. It lated became the United Methodist Chapel but over the 1920s the congregation began to dwindle.

It was converted to offices in 1933 and is here occupied by British Road Services.

In more recent times it was acquired by propert developers Hammerson, the company developing the Victoria Gate scheme, who recently said they were still reviewing plans for the Grade II listed site.

Dr Kevin Grady, director of Leeds Civic Trust, which has previously included the building on its ‘at risk’ register, said he would like to see Hammerson bring the iconic structure back to life.

When the building was first bought as part of the overall Victoria Gate scheme, it was feared it might end up being demolished.

Dr Grady argues, however, that keeping it could help enhance the overall Victoria Gate strategy, by creating a historical anchor - a living connection with the past.

He said: “If you flatten the whole area, you’ve lost all contact in terms of gradual evolution of the place.”

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