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Issue:- Thursday, 25 August 2016

Headlines and reports on this page = 1 news items.    Page - 4.

Best Rescue of a Heritage Site

►  Julie and Howard Duckworth, Goole, East Riding of Yorkshire - Since 1983 husband and wife team Julie and Howard Duckworth have been bringing empty properties back into use. They have invested over £4.5 million into the regeneration of Goole, particularly on Aire Street, which was the heart of the historic Aire and Calder Company Town. Their first restoration in Goole, of the Station Hotel, created 38 jobs and 12 affordable, environmentally friendly apartments. They are now beginning to turn around the fortunes of the Goole Conservation Area, currently on:- 'Historic England's At Risk Register.'

►  The Arkwright Society, Building 17, Cromford Mills, Derbyshire - Cromford Mills was purchased by the Arkwright Society, a Building Preservation Trust, in 1979. The site is Grade I listed and has become a key attraction of the Derwent Valley Mills World Heritage Site, that is the only 1 in the East Midlands. By 2008 the site and the Society were facing significant problems: they were in £1.2million of debt while 50% of the site still remained derelict and on Historic England's At Risk Register. Thankfully, new management saved the site from foreclosure and fought to bring the disused building back into economic use. Now several workspace office units have been developed and managed by Cromford Creative. The site also enjoys far more visitors and 100 volunteers carry out over £250,000 of voluntary activity every year.

►  Suffolk Mind and the Churches Conservation Trust for the rescue of St Mary at the Quay, Ipswich, Suffolk, East of England - This church was rescued and transformed through a partnership between the Churches Conservation Trust (CCT) and mental health charity Suffolk Mind. Suffolk Mind knew the CCT were looking for ways to regenerate St Mary at the Quay and saw the building as the answer to its plans for a wellbeing venue, which is now known as Quay Place. The project has delivered a beautifully repaired and adapted historic church with a modern extension for therapy services. The church was used as a living classroom during construction, providing work experience to local construction students who had the rare chance to work with historic fabric. Through a diverse programme of learning and artistic activities, the community has also created an interactive interpretation which explores the maritime history of Ipswich and the stories of people who once lived there.

►  Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council for the rescue of Ashton Old Baths, Greater Manchester, North West: This project has been led by Tameside Council working in partnership with Place First Ltd. The aims were to create a Business innovation Centre in a timber pod structure within the restored Grade II listed Ashton Old Baths (targeting at Creative, Digital and Media businesses) and to get the building off the Heritage at Risk Register by conserving and restoring the building.

Outstanding Contribution, sponsored by Aon Estates Practice

►  Alan and Griselda Garner, Toad Hall and the Old Medicine House, Cheshire, North West - In 1957 Alan Garner bought the dilapidated, late medieval timber framed Toad Hall and since then the couple have worked tirelessly to save it from complete dereliction and the nearby Old Medicine House from demolition. They have also researched, with others, 10,000 years of the area's history and shared the stories with the community, especially with young people who have been inspired to get involved in the investigation. The couple acknowledge and celebrate the lives of the area's previous inhabitants, urging people to see the place as a valuable resource, steeped in history and accessible to all.

►  Carlo Diponio - Construction Supervisor, at Dudley Zoo, Tecton Buildings, at Dudley Zoo, in the Black Country, West Midlands - Carlo is the construction supervisor, at Dudley Zoo who has made a huge contribution to the restoration of the Tecton Buildings, at Dudley Zoological Gardens. The Tectons were designed by Russian born architect Berthold Lubetkin and Dudley Zoo boasts the world's largest single collection of Tecton buildings. All 12 of them are listed and in 2009 the buildings were granted:- 'World Monuments Fund' status, giving it the same status as Machu Picchu and the Taj Mahal. In 2014 Heritage Lottery Funding was granted to refurbish these amazing structures. Carlo is the Zoo's expert in the field of concrete and knows the best techniques for restoring these buildings which were instrumental in bringing modernist architecture to the UK.

►  Jim Buckland and Sarah Wain, Head Gardeners, West Dean Gardens, Chichester, South East - Many years ago, husband and wife team, professional gardeners Jim Buckland and Sarah Wain began restoring the 19th Century landscape of West Dean Gardens and it has become their life's work. The pair has restored the derelict gardens back to their original glory by working within the historic framework but adding their own contemporary contributions and ensuring the 240 acre gardens could be easily maintained with limited resources. The gardens today are internationally respected for both the quality and variety of horticultural practice and historic features, attracting around 60,000 visitors annually from all over the world. While open, a programme of public events is held annually, including an open air community theatre and an award-winning Chilli Fiesta, founded by Jim and Sarah in 1995, which now attracts 25,000 visitors.

►  David Lovell, Britain from Above and Enriching the List, across England: David has made around 65,500 contributions to the Britain from Above website, identifying a huge archive of aerial images from the 1920's onwards, including 300 images from 600 unlocated photographs. He has also worked closely with Historic England on its new initiative:- "Enriching the List", where the public can add their own knowledge to information on listed places. David has contributed over 1500 images to this recent project, and has a library of 20,000 catalogued images which he hopes to share in due course.

Best Research Project

►  Star Carr Research Group, Star Carr Early Mesolithic Site, near Scarborough, North Yorkshire: Star Carr has been an internationally significant site since its first discovery in the late 1930's. The recent excavations by the Star Carr Archaeology Group have saved its rapidly decaying archaeological evidence and completely changed the picture of how we understand this little known part of early British prehistory. The Project team has collaborated with partners across Britain and Europe, focussing on how people have adapted to and lived with climate change; something we consider a very modern problem. The group have shared their work through academic and popular publications, several public events across North Yorkshire, school interpretation days and open days. The results of the archaeological work are also being used to create a physical interpretation of the Early Mesolithic period.

►  Pride of Place: England's LGBTQ Heritage, across England: This project records and celebrates lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer (LGBTQ) history and heritage across England. The Pride of Place team from Leeds Beckett University has worked closely with Historic England and LGBTQ community partners across England to ensure that LGBTQ heritage is recognised and celebrated by all communities. An online, crowd sourced map of LGBTQ locations across England has been created as part of this project. It has gathered over 1600 entries, showing that LGBTQ heritage is everywhere in England and from all time periods.

►  Fylde Decorative and Fine Arts Society, Lytham St Annes Town Art Collection stored at the Fylde Council Town Hall, Lancashire, North West: Fylde DFAS were determined to save, share and better store their decaying Town Hall Art Collection, one of the finest in the UK. Volunteers learned how to research and catalogue the Collection and even learned some museum curatorial skills to properly care for it. An online and printed catalogue of the Collection was produced, with images and information about it fully accessible for the 1st time. Now local people can better understand how important a resource this is and how central it is to the town's culture and heritage.

►  Port Sunlight Village Trust and Wirral Borough Council, The Wirral, North West: The Port Sunlight Village Trust (PSVT) is a registered charity which manages the Port Sunlight Museum, all of the green spaces, around 250 houses and 8 principal buildings in the village. Their aim is to conserve and maintain the Port Sunlight conservation area, encouraging a better understanding of its value as a heritage site. The charity worked with Wirral Borough Council to implement the Local Listed Building Consent Order as a positive way of conserving and enhancing Port Sunlight. This saved diminishing resources within the local authority and provided greater clarity to homeowners. Through their hard work and collaborative approach they have actively addressed local conservation issues and are a positive case study for future local groups and councils to learn from.

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