Innovation and Skills Quarter (ISQ) Development Programme

The Innovation and Skills Quarter is a development programme focused on the area around the original Victorian town centre area of West Hartlepool. Incorporating a conservation area, train station, art gallery and an expanding Northern School of Art Higher Education Campus, the area was not achieving its full potential. Through the development of the Regeneration Masterplan 2015, a Creative Industries Strategy for Church Street and a strategic land and property review in 2018 a number of key projects were identified for development to support the revival and growth of this strategic part of Hartlepool.

A number of projects supported by the public sector have been delivered:

  • The creation of the BIS on Whitby Street; a centre of managed studio and workspace for the creative industries owned and run by the Council, read more
  • Major improvements to the streetscape and connectivity along Church Street, read more.
  • Major streetscape improvements in the Church Street and Church Square heritage area around the Hartlepool Art Gallery. Significant public realm and building renovation works have been supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and will provide space for public events and exhibitions. Read more.

Further projects are in development, including:

  • The restoration of the Shades Hotel, a grade II listed building central to the Church Street conservation area. The building will be brought back in to use.
  • Northern School of Arts development of the Film and TV Studios and Scott Building teaching space.
  • Improvements to individual buildings and shop fronts through the Townscape Heritage Initiative.
  • Private sector investment into key buildings in Scarborough Street will bring new leisure and residential uses to the street.

Other investment has been delivered in the area which is contributing to its growth including  improvements to Hartlepool train station and investment by individual business entrepreneurs.

Investors: Hartlepool Borough Council; Tees Valley Combined Authority; National Lottery Heritage Fund; Northern School of Art; Private Investors.

Related Investment: Hartlepool Town Deal Investment, Town Centre Masterplan 2020, The BIS, Church Street Conservation Area Revival Project.