Over the next six months the team from HH Smith will carry out electricals, drainage, wiring, and the stripping out of modern additions, like mezzanine floors and MDF partitions.
This work will prepare the Grade I listed building for the next phase of regeneration, which will see teams of conservation specialists restore the building's heritage features, including the magna carta mural and ceiling panels in the great hall, the stained glass windows and the wood carvings.
As well restoring the town hall's historic features, the project will create new spaces in parts of the building that have never before been open to the public.
A new heritage skills conservation studio is being set up as part of the project, offer up to 15 people the opportunity to train in conservation heritage skills, including stained glass and woodwork restoration. HH Smith is contributing to the cost of this.
Rochdale councillor John Blundell said: "I'm delighted to see this incredibly exciting project ready to get underway just as we start a brand new year. The town hall is an important building, which has a special place in the hearts of many Rochdalians. It's served us well for 150 years and this work will ensure it will serve our residents and visitors for another 150 and many more.
"I'm really pleased that a Greater Manchester company will be working with us to deliver this first key stage of work and I can't wait to see how this project develops."
Work is expected to complete in 2023
HH Smith construction director Rob Smith said: "We're delighted to be working on the prestigious Rochdale Town Hall regeneration project. To be able to demonstrate our restoration capabilities so close to home is a privilege and we welcome the opportunity to provide the many additional social benefits within the local community."
The town hall restoration project is being delivered by Rochdale Development Agency on behalf on Rochdale Borough Council. The client’s team includes structural engineer Price & Myers, building services engineer Max Fordham, cost manager Frank Whittle Partnership and architect Donald Insall Associates.