Wednesday, 19 November 2014

News digest

Efforts to conserve York's Convent Bar

Chelmsford Shire Hall restored in £500,000 project; but future still to be decided

Plan to tarmac Edinburgh's historic cobbled streets

£1.5m rescue package for Liverpool's Ropewalks and Chinatown historic buildings

Friday, 14 November 2014

News digest

Georgian interior of St John's Knutsford restored

Ludlow's Buttercross 'should not be on buildings at risk register'

Wentworth Woodhouse put on market

New used planned for Westbrooke House, 'finest Georgian house in Alton'

Edmund Brudenell, restorer of Deene Park, Northamptonshire

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

News digest

Melbourne, Derbyshire
(Burton Mail, 10 October 2014)
Residents lose fight over house pub plan

Harborough, Leics
(Harborough Mail, 2 October 2014)
Hotel's work to restore its Georgian splendour

Stamford, Lincs
(Rutland & Stamford Mercury, 29 September 2014)
Campaigners' Dismay as Stamford Hub Plan is Approved

Ludlow, Shropshire
(Shropshire Star, 7 October 2014)
New lease of life for derelict townhouse: handsome listed building stood empty for more than 15 years

Hackney, London 
(Hackney Citizen 6 October 2014)
'Disney' claim amid concern Dalston spirit will disappear

Hackney, London 
(Hackney Gazette, 13 October 2014)
Judicial Review set to rule on historic Dalston Lane houses

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Do you know a Grade II building that needs attention? Read on...

English Heritage is looking for local groups and authorities to be involved in the next stage of its national Grade II project. Those interested in taking part are being asked to put forward proposals on how they could work with local volunteers to survey the condition of local Grade II listed buildings, using a template and guidance designed by us. Local authorities will then be able to use the findings to help those buildings most at risk of being lost. These projects will be funded through English Heritage’s National Heritage Protection Commissions Programme.

The surveys will be done using an online recording tool and training package, aimed at collecting and maintaining nationally consistent Grade II data across the country, and providing volunteers with the guidance and skills needed to carry out condition surveys. This follows a series of pilot studies undertaken in 2013.

English Heritage is asking groups, who will work with more than 800 volunteers across the country, to test the usability and impact of the tools nationally to see if they work on a local level. All projects need to: involve surveying or resurveying Grade II listed buildings; use the English Heritage recording tool and training package; use volunteers; undertake surveys in an open and transparent way; work well with building owners; and include some method for validating and moderating the results.

For more information click here.The deadline for proposals is 23:59 on Friday 8 August 2014.

For any general enquiries please contact Bethan Cornwall:

If you are interested in submitting a proposal and would like to discuss this, please contact the relevant local contact outlined in the call for proposals document.

Friday, 2 May 2014

Bishop of Bath and Wells to remain in his palace, after all

From The Daily Telegraph

Controversial plans to stop a bishop living in the mediaeval palace occupied by his predecessors for centuries have been withdrawn.

The Rt Rev Peter Hancock, who will be formally enthroned as the 79th Bishop of Bath and Wells next month, had been told he would not live in the 13th Century palace because it was not “conducive to ministry” and a more normal family home would be found.

The mediaeval complex doubles as diocesan headquarters and a tourist attraction and the Church Commissioners, the Church of England’s property and financial arm, argued that it lacked privacy for the bishop and his family.

But the Commissioners were openly ridiculed when it emerged they had bought a grand Georgian former rectory outside Wells at a cost of £900,000 for the bishop to live in until something more “permanent” could be found.

The property, complete with walled gardens, is much larger than the modest flat in Wells Palace set aside as the bishop’s quarters.

Now, following an unprecedented protest by the diocese itself [and the Georgian Group, Country Life and others], a specially convened tribunal acting on behalf of the Archbishops of Canterbury and York has thrown out the decision and ruled that the new bishop should live within the city of Wells itself. The panel of the Archbishops’ Council said officials had failed to make the case for the move out of the palace.

In a nine-page judgment it also noted that the commissioners had been warned that exiling the bishop from his palace was likely to lead to uproar in the diocese. “The Commissioners failed to anticipate the impact of their decision in Wells and in the wider diocese,” the panel ruled.

No decision has been taken on what now to do with the empty rectory, although it was described in the judgment as an “attractive investment asset”.

Bishop Hancock, who will move to Wells in early June, said: “The Palace will be at the heart of my ministry as the place where I live, study, pray and work, alongside the Bishop of Taunton.”

Tessa Munt, the local MP, who campaigned against the episcopal relocation, said: “I was honoured to have the opportunity to give evidence as a witness on behalf of the diocese ... and I’m absolutely delighted that the Archbishops’ Council has been just and fair and made a common sense decision which will be welcomed and supported by the whole of diocese.

“The city of Wells will give a collective jump for joy and can’t wait to welcome the new Bishop, and his family to his house in the palace.”

In a joint statement, the diocese and Church Commissioners said: “We appreciate the thoroughness of the Council’s consideration and the swiftness with which the decision has been reached. This outcome enables all concerned to look to the future, to celebrate the arrival of the new Bishop and to welcome Bishop Peter and his wife Jane when they arrive in June.”

Monday, 3 March 2014

Liverpool City Council have approved plans for the refurbishment of a row of derelict shops in Dale Street despite concerns over “security risks” to the magistrates court, reports The Liverpool Echo.
The council gave the go-ahead to the project to rescue the Georgian terrace, the earliest example in Liverpool of so called 'shop houses', ie purpose-built shop incorporating accommodation blocks in the city. The new scheme, by developers Jam Works Limited, will respect this historic use by creating flats above shops. The Lord Chancellor's Department objected to the proposals on the grounds that some apartments would overlook the courtyard where suspects are brought into the courts, but a planning condition will ensure that walls are built to shield the courtyard from view. The Georgian Group has welcomed the salvation of a derelict and threatened terrace which has long faced an uncertain future.