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Consultation: Brunel Engine Shed improvements


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This consultation has now closed. Details of the consultation and supporting documents can still be viewed below.


From 17 December 2019 to 6 January 2020 we ran a public consultation on proposals to improve the Brunel Engine Shed, located near High Wycombe railway station. Our proposals aim to develop the currently vacant space for a mix of commercial uses, together with enhanced landscaping. This may include co-working space, start-up businesses, retail, cafés and restaurants.

Start date: Wednesday 17 December 2019
End date: Monday 6 January 2020 (11.59pm)

Background detail

Situated in the heart of High Wycombe, the Brunel Engine Shed is a Grade II listed building adjacent to the High Wycombe railway station. The building is currently not in use and has been neglected. This project proposes the refurbishment and upgrade of the existing building and the addition of a new extension.

The project is part of our Eastern Quarter Regeneration - a wider programme to renew the area around High Wycombe railway station and along Easton Street.

The regeneration of the area around High Wycombe railway station (the ‘Eastern Quarter’) is vital for the prosperity of the town and the wider district. The acquisition of the Brunel Engine Shed and surrounding land is the first step in the plan to transform this part of High Wycombe into a place for local residents and visitors to use and enjoy.


Map of 'Eastern Quarter Regeneration'

Eastern Quarter Regeneration

Photos of current Brunel Engine Shed

Existing Photos


Design vision

There a number of opportunities offered by the Brunel Engine Shed site, including:

  1. improved pedestrian access and creation of new building entrance facing train station
  2. frontages to future proposals within the ‘Eastern Quarter Regeneration’
  3. opportunity for improving landscaping and views into the building when approaching from town centre
  4. the sensitive upgrade and refurbishment of the existing Grade II listed building
  5. opportunity for a new-build extension and new entrance

Map showing site opportunities for the Brunel Engine Shed.

View further details about the 'design vision' for the Brunel Engine Shed below.

  1. Sensitive upgrade and refurbishment of existing building envelope, with new glazing and floor.
  2. Upgrade existing building roof with slate and roof windows for natural ventilation and daylight.
  3. Add new-build extension using contemporary materials, responding to the roof form of the existing shed.
  4. Create a welcoming new entrance and improve pedestrian links from the train station.
  5. Create transparent, active frontages facing the Eastern Quarter and town centre, with improved landscaping.
  6. Create large, flexible space for mixed commercial uses and improve accessibility of the building.

Key design principles for the Brunel engine shed improvements


The ground floor includes the main shed space for mixed commercial uses, such as office,cafe or retail, as shown in the diagram below. The new extension provides additional open-plan spaces on the ground and first floor, with the addition of a mezzanine level. Back-of-house and support spaces (such as WCs, showers and storage) are located in the existing two-storey ticket office building.

Diagram showing ground floor spatial arrangement for proposed Brunel Engine Shed.

The building’s spatial arrangement is designed to allow for flexibility of use and future adaptation of the spaces. The project prioritises improving accessibility for users of the building, providing a step-free main entrance, accessible WCs and a new lift in the extension.

The proposal celebrates the heritage value and history of the Brunel Engine Shed. New, high-quality glazing will be installed in the existing openings of the building, which are currently concealed behind the timber hoarding and roller shutters. This will bring natural daylight into the main space and allow the public to see into the building from all sides.

The new extension’s massing design responds to the pitched roof form of the original building and uses engineered timber structure and high-quality zinc cladding. The glazing in the new extension will match the appearance of the new glazing for the existing building. There will be openable windows to allow natural ventilation whilst addressing any security concerns by restricting the size of the opening.

The illustrative drawings below show the exterior views of the proposal when approaching the building from the town centre or from the train station (bus stop side).

Illustrated view of Brunel Engine Shed from town centre side.

Illustrated view of Brunel Engine Shed from train station side.



Sensitive structural repairs to the existing building will be carried out in locations where the building structure has deteriorated, primarily due to leaks in the roof.

Designing for flexibility and future adaptability is key to the project. The illustrative drawing below shows how the space could be used as a cafe and office space.

The open plan layout of the main space celebrates the character of the original train shed, as well as providing flexibility to future operators of the building. The engineered timber structure of the extension will be visible from the inside, following the same rhythm as the original queen roof trusses designed by Brunel.

Illustrated inside view of Brunel Engine Shed, with beams, tables, chairs and visitors.



This online public consultation closed on Monday 6 January 2020.

A public exhibition took place on 17 December 2019.

Next steps

We will review all feedback received prior to submitting a planning application in early 2020.

Contact us

For questions regarding this consultation please get in touch with Stefanie Mizen at