Video thumbnail, Look: Inside Huddersfield's iconic Co-op building and former nightclub Heaven and Hell
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It's an iconic building, passed by many thousands of people every day.

But how many stop to look at the Co-op Building on the corner of New Street?

Recent activity in the shape of scaffolding and workmen on site has renewed public interest in the building, which dates back to 1936, so Kirklees Council gave me a tour of the building late last week.

Workers on site are carrying out surveys to assess what condition the Co-op is in.

Heaven or Hell? Click below for a look inside the former nightclub

The results will be assessed by Paul Kemp, assistant director of place, and Jim Mould, project manager, among others.

Early signs indicate that while the roof needs attention, the four-storey interior requires largely superficial work befitting a building of its age.

Much of the interior remains untouched since it was last used. The former music school has a stage in front of the fabulous art deco style windows.

The decor of the nightclub 'Heaven and Hell’ remains, which will undoubtedly bring back memories for revellers of the not too distant past.

Paul Kemp described the Co-op as a “fabulous building with a lot of potential.”

And despite its untidy interior, the potential is clear.

The views from the upper floors are pretty amazing. Rural views of Castle Hill meet modern architecture of the nearby Kirklees College.

And while the hustle and bustle of the shoppers, cars and daily life goes on outside, it’s amazingly quiet inside.

Its four floors are large, open rectangular spaces, ideal for a number of uses.

What the Co-op’s future holds remains to be seen, but a way needs to be found to make the best use of the Co-op and retain its facade.

The Co-operative building, New Street, Huddersfield.
 

Kirklees Council is having to make budget cuts, and they are also reducing the number of unused buildings.

It’s a balancing act as to whether it’s in the council’s – and taxpayers’ – best financial interests to spend money on roof repairs to get a higher sale price; off load it on the cheap; or revitalise and retain the Co-op with a vision of regeneration in mind.

People with have their own views, but Kirklees has a beautiful building on its books which is expensive to keep hold of.

A potential buyer may be found but a building isn’t a building without a roof, and Kirklees may have to stump up for some repairs and in doing so, they might just allow for it to be brought back to life. Surely better than it sitting idle?

Social media was abuzz with ideas when I said I was having a tour, a shopping centre; Huddersfield’s own Salts Mill, apartments, and a museum were mooted.

Only time – and the results of the survey – will tell.

Want to learn more about the iconic building? Here's a brief history