Visualisation of the new Windermere Steamboat Museum. Copyright: Carmody Groarke

Six projects receive £47m HLF funding boost

Rebecca Atkinson, 30.07.2013
Successful award for museum on Lake Windermere
Six heritage sites have received a share of £47m investment from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), including a new museum building on the edge of Lake Windermere.

Windermere Steamboat Museum in Cumbria has received a confirmed grant of £9.4m towards the development of a new building designed by Carmody Groarke architects. The project includes a new wet dock so visitors can see boats displayed in the water and a publicly viewable conservation workshop.

Martin Ainscough, chairman of the Lakeland Arts Trust, which runs the museum, said: “This decision secures a total of £13.4m investment into Cumbria, creating employment and new opportunities for local people.”

Brecknock Museum and Art Gallery in Powys has received a £2.5m confirmed HLF grant towards its restoration and redisplay. The museum has been closed to the public since 2011 and expects to reopen in 2015.

Flax Mill Maltings in Shropshire has secured £12.8m to restore the world’s first iron-framed building for commercial, community and visitor purposes, while Winchester Cathedral in Hampshire will receive £10.5m for urgent conservation work and a redeveloped visitor experience.

The other successful projects are: Knole in Kent, which has been given £7.75m towards a refurbishment and new conservation space; and Chester Farm in Northamptonshire, which has secured £4m to carry out a series of excavations and develop an archaeological resource centre.

Recent research by the HLF found that heritage-based tourism is now worth £26.4bn to the UK economy.

Carole Souter, chief executive of the HLF, said: “We know that heritage is a huge draw for visitors from home and abroad. More than a quarter of all UK holiday activities undertaken by UK residents now involve heritage.

“These projects all offer the public the chance to explore and enjoy our rich and complex history. Many of us will be spending our holidays at home this summer, so it’s a great time to celebrate the unique range of things to see and do right here on our doorstep.”

Meanwhile, four projects have been awarded initial support from the HLF.

They are: the Victoria and Albert Museum's Exhibition Road building, London (£5m); Middlesbrough Town Hall (£4m including £299,400 development funding); Enniskillen Castle, Northern Ireland (£2.5m including £111,200 development funding; and John Wesley's New Room, Bristol (£2.3m including £56,200 development funding).

All four projects now have to submit fully developed proposals to secure a confirmed award at a later date.


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Jonathan Gammond
MA Member
Access & Interpretation Officer, Wrexham County Borough Museum
31.07.2013, 22:40
Congratulations to Nigel Blackamore at Brecknock Museum & Art Gallery. He has slogged away tirelessly to pull what was a beached ship off the sands (even the rocks!), get her seaworthy again and finally with this grant from the HLF ensure the ship gets the refit to make her a great visitor attraction and local community resource. (I have no idea why I have added all these nautical references as you can't be much more landlocked than Brecon!) Brecon has a great heritage, a great museum building and bags of potential which I am sure Nigel has the drive and determination to realise.