Final designs for Northampton's £2m new Sikh temple unveiled

Construction could start on a £2 million new Sikh temple and community centre as soon as June after architects' plans were put out to tender.

Tuesday, 18th April 2017, 6:26 pm
Updated Tuesday, 9th May 2017, 7:02 pm
The new Sikh temple in StJames will feature a gym and a 120-space car park.

Plans to build a new gurdwara in St James Mill Road, were first mooted in 2012 when Northampton Sikhs bought an old Cosworth factory building there and gained planning permission to develop the site into a place of worship.

Minor demolition works have been taking place since then, but construction could soon get underway from June, after architects' designs of the new centre were released this week.

Sikh leader Amarjit Singh Atwal, who is one of the project leaders and trustees, said: "Our current gurdwara in St George's Street (near the town centre) just doesn't have the number of parking spaces we need.

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"The building we have at the moment, we can't perform big wedding ceremonies, big funerals and big celebrations.

"This will give us four-or-five times the capacity and we will have our own 120-space car park."

Currently, Northampton Sikhs have to hire third-party venues for its community groups to use.

But the new Siri Guru Singh Sabha gurdwara in St James, part-funded by donations from the Sikh community and a loan from Natwest, will feature community rooms available for hire as well as a gym available to the wider public.

Mr Atwal said the architects' drawings have now been sent out to tender and it is hoped a contractor will be in place by June.

The first phase of the building the external works, could be finished by February, 2018. Internal works may not be complete until February 2019, however.

"We want everyone to use the space when it is built," said Mr Atwal. "People can just hire the hall, or the classrooms for meetings.

"This new building will enable us to enhance the services we provide."