How the White Rose Centre was transformed in refurbishment project.

Owners of the White Rose Centre had ambitions to bring the biggest names in retail to the shopping centre, and to do that meant a major redevelopment of the retail space.

Project Introduction.

The White Rose Centre, located in Dewsbury, Leeds, underwent a significant refurbishment to breathe life back into the retail development, 26 years after it first opened.

Owners of the White Rose Centre had ambitions to bring the biggest names in retail to the shopping centre, and to do that meant a major redevelopment of the existing retail space.

Aspire Construction was appointed as the specialist building contractor to cover a wide range of building construction services

Both Aspire Construction and the client’s team were aligned in the delivery of the project, working towards a more effective delivery by reducing complexity, managing expectations, and focusing on the long-term benefits to the building and the client.

Project Brief.

The primary objective was to merge seven units within the White Rose Centre into three new units, ready for occupancy by the new retailers.

With a 13 week programme delivered over two phases, not only our construction expertise but our project management capabilities were demonstrated, so it was delivered on time and within budget. Our planning and execution were critical to adhere to the strict project timeline and budgets, ensuring the units were ready for retailers to move into.

The scope of works encompassed a range of construction services including extensive demolition throughout the seven units, structural modifications, commercial alterations, and refurbishment tasks.

Not only were we entrusted to design, co-ordinate, and carry out the required construction works, we had to consider and limit disruption as it was a busy retail environment with shoppers and staff in close proximity.


Aspire Construction embarked on the project with a cohesive and clear schedule of works.

The initial phase involved stripping the existing units down to their shells, which included the removal of shelving, partitions, wall panelling, changing rooms, and WC cubicles.

Demolition was a major aspect of this project, requiring specialised equipment including various sizes of Brokk demolition robots for the removal of the existing mezzanine floors, and miro skid steers with grapple attachments for material and debris removal.

Following the demolition and disposal of the existing concrete floor, we embarked on the careful removal of the existing structural steel work, with the use of specialised gas cutting equipment.

We commissioned the design and managed the install of the new steel frame for the new mezzanine area. The frame was fabricated for the bespoke requirements of the existing internal space.

The project posed several challenges, most notably, noise control and dust management in the busy shopping centre. These were carefully managed by reducing noise levels and using specialist electric machines to reduce harmful CO2 emissions. An exception was the Bobcat excavator/loader which was fitted with a Ravex Mini Diesel Filter Kit M30, to help omit harmful fumes.

Also, the safety of all operatives and site team was paramount. Before any works began, all of the Aspire Construction team had a safety induction ensuring a clear understanding of the project’s safety protocols and building operators procedures. This was supplemented with daily morning safety and co ordination briefing, which ensured all site operatives were aware of the specific hazards that day, this assisted the various subcontractors on site to maximise productivity.

Tom Kilgannon, Managing Director of Aspire Construction, commented,

“We were excited to be working on this project. Part of our remit for the project was managing all construction works effectively, timely, and safely.

Our team was heavily involved in the controlled demolition, steel work structures, structural alterations, and various associated building works. It was important that we acted professionally and safely throughout, working alongside not only the main contractor’s team but other sub-contractors too.

Each and every one of our team represented Aspire Construction in the best light, working towards the common goal of project success for our client and the White Rose Centre. Whenever unforseen problems arose on site, we made sure that our main focus was on finding a solution rather than appointing blame.”


The end result of the project was seven units merged into three modern, ready-to-lease units that gave the White Rose Centre a modern and unique aesthetic.

Tom Bunting, Contracts Manager at Aspire Construction, commented,

“The success of this project highlights our commitment to delivering quality, on-time, and within-budget solutions.

Our flexibility in how we carry out construction or civils services sets us apart from other contractors within industry.

We take pride in our work and carry out all projects with the highest of standards. This was noticeable when working on the White Rose Centre, where all works were carried out and completed on time and within our client’s budget.”

For our client, they were presented with retail spaces that were not only aesthetically appealing but also structurally sound, enabled the building operator to secure a long term profitable lease with one of the world’s biggest sporting brand. adhering to the latest building standards. This gave their client confidence and reassurance that the spaces were fit for purpose and maximised their potential to lease to retailers.

The project was a testimony to Aspire Construction’s expertise in managing a complex refurbishment commercial project within a live, busy retail environment. Our professional team carried out their works ensuring minimal disruption to the shopping centre’s operations.

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