Launch day for £2-million town heritage building project

Wednesday 22nd April 2015 10:00 pm

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A £2-MILLION project which promises to breathe life back into some of Tavistock's key historic buildings over the next five years will be celebrated at a special launch day for all the family this Saturday.

Morris dancers, hourly walking tours around some of the old buildings that are eligible for the project and free tea and cake in the town hall are all on offer at the event which takes place from 10am to 3pm. There will be a special ceremony to launch the project at noon.

The launch day marks the start of a programme to revitalise the historic core of the town which is being partly funded through a grant of almost £1-million from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).

The funding is being matched by an equal amount from businesses and local authorities providing an overall boost of £2-million for the local economy.

Tavistock Townscape Heritage Partnership is developing the initiative which will see many of the town's buildings rejuvenated. Among them are expected to be the town's pannier market and Butchers Hall which were built by the wealthy 7th Duke of Bedford in the mid-nineteenth century from the profits he made through copper mining in the area.

The partnership has recently appointed Katharine West as the project manager who will carry the programme forward into the delivery phase. A qualified chartered surveyor, Katharine has 20 years of experience in regeneration projects across the South West region. Katharine is also a local girl and went to school at Whitchurch and Tavistock.

She said that she was very excited about the project and added: 'I'm keen to ensure that the HLF funding is used effectively to enable Tavistock to maximise the wider regeneration benefits that such significant funding can bring.'

The HLF funding is the culmination of six years work by the partnership of local councils, businesses and community groups, coordinated and administered by Tavistock Town Council. The money has been allocated from the Heritage Lottery Fund's Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI) programme which helps communities improve the built historic environment to stimulate economic regeneration for the benefit of local residents, workers and visitors.

Tavistock Townscape Heritage Partnership chairman John Taylor said: 'We're delighted to have Katharine on board and we know that there's a great deal of work to do over the coming months to put in place the building blocks for the restoration of these important buildings in the town centre conservation area.'

Tavistock Town Clerk Carl Hearn added: 'The local partnership has worked hard to secure this investment for the town which we believe will boost the local economy. We want to ensure that Tavistock's built environment is of a high quality, demonstrating a confident and successful town, attractive to visitors and businesses alike.'

For more details about the Tavistock Townscape Heritage project or to get involved contact Katharine West via email on [email protected]

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