A NEW "Cultural Quarter" in Huddersfield is taking shape.
News yesterday that Kirklees Music School could have a new home in Northumberland Street has been hailed as a big boost for the town.
The plan to use the Huddersfield Christian Fellowship Centre means the school will be near the Kirklees Media Centre and Beaumont Street Studios - both thriving projects.
The music school has agreed with the Huddersfield Christian Fellowship to buy the Fellowship Centre in Northumberland Street, opposite the main Post Office.
James Ellam, chairman of the music school, said: "The building is an exciting prospect for the music school, providing an excellent base for the growing amount of central music teaching of ensembles and individuals drawn from schools round Huddersfield.
"The main hall will be ideal for large groups such as the Kirklees Youth Symphony Orchestra and will also double as a venue for recitals, master classes and small informal concerts.
"The Media Centre and Beaumont Street Studios are already nearby and when the music school moves to the Fellowship Centre it will underline the importance of this part of the town as a growing centre for the arts."
The music school has been seeking suitable premises for some five years without much success.
When its lease of part of the Co-operative Building ran out last year, Salendine Nook High School stepped in to allow the use of its premises.
Mr Ellam said: "The music school is very grateful for their help and support during this period, but will be pleased to move into premises of its own once again. We are planning to transfer activities from Salendine Nook during the summer holiday period and to start teaching at the Northumberland Street building this coming autumn term."
The Christian Fellowship in Huddersfield holds its Sunday services at Harvest House - the former Comet store - in St John's Road.
The church has outline planning permission for a new building on part of the site of the former Brook Crompton engineering firm in St Thomas's Road, between Folly Hall and Longroyd Bridge.
Church officials are keen for the building they are leaving to be used by the music school, which encourages both cultural and educational ideals for the young people of Kirklees.
As part of the agreement, the Christian Fellowship will maintain a presence in the building, including its coffee shop and bookshop, while its own building project is under way.
The music school plans a two-year programme of refurbishments, including soundproofing of teaching and rehearsal rooms.