Grandeur of the Dun Cow revealed again as scaffolding comes down following restoration as part of Sunderland's £2m heritage project
The 1901 building, constructed in the same year as The Peacock and six years before the Empire Theatre, has undergone restoration as part of a £2 million Bishopwearmouth Heritage Township scheme, which will see a number of listed buildings undergo refurbishment and the new Town Park completed.
The completion of the works means the structure put up to help construction workers as finally been taken down, revealing the detailed and repaired stonework, which includes a number of carved animals, while the building has been made watertight once again, after its roof was deemed to be in a “terrible state” by its owner Pub Culture.
Its clock, which stopped 20 years ago, is also ticking again after it was given some TLC from experts.
Paul Callaghan is one of four founding members of Pub Culture, which also owns the Peacock, with the scaffolding around that venue also taken down in recent weeks following its restoration as part of the same scheme, which is being managed by Sunderland City Council.
He explained the Dun Cow was designed by architect Benjamin Ferdinand Simpson, whose other well-known landmark building in the region is the Emmerson Chambers in Blackett Street, Newcastle, now home to the city’s branch of Waterstones, which he developed as his own office.
It, along with the Peacock and Empire, are created in the Edwardian Gothic style, used as Sunderland’s great and good looked to create a grand and beautiful town to reflect its improving fortunes.
He added: “Both the Dun Cow and Peacock had been pretty neglected over the years and this has helped bring them back to their Edwardian glory and now these buildings are part of this regeneration of Sunderland.
"The coronavirus crisis has its challenges at the moment and we hope that is soon over, but what we are doing will help people continue to enjoy these buildings.
"We are creating this cultural quarter in the city for people so they can go and see a show, have some refreshments and feel safe, and I think it’s really going to transform the city.”