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The Buttermarket, an aspiring cultural and community hub, is among a diverse range of projects awarded funding in England

9 December 2021

The Architectural Heritage Fund is thrilled to announce six new Transformational Project Grants in England, funded by our Transforming Places through Heritage programme, which has been supported by a £15 million grant from the UK Government through the Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport. The recipients of the grants range from a Grade I former chapel to a historic pub. These awards were approved at our latest Grants Panel meeting where, overall, 16 projects across the UK were offered funding totalling £1,243,907.


Among those projects funded was The Buttermarket in Redruth, Cornwall. Redruth Revival was awarded £250,000 in funding to support plans to restore and refurbish a Grade II-listed complex into a community hub at the heart of the Redruth High Street Heritage Action Zone.

The Buttermarket was built in approximately 1825 on the historic site of Redruth Town Market. Originally a three-sided building, it was enclosed on the fourth side when the Mining Exchange and Wheal Peevor Purser’s Office (WPPO) were constructed in the 1880s. The complex consists of two-storey buildings around an attractive porticoed courtyard. Throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, Redruth was an important farming and mining centre – the Buttermarket housed agricultural dealers and stalls, while the Mining Exchange and the WPPO supported trading of mineral stock and were key parts of the local industry.

This project aims to restore the Buttermarket into a thriving economic, cultural and community hub, with workspace and an active programme of markets and entertainment. While the complex already provides some community engagement opportunities, the space is limited and poor-quality. Redruth Revival seeks to improve on this potential, creating self-contained workspaces for long-term rent on the upper level of the buildings, with additional ground floor units around the courtyard for makers or craftspeople who deal directly with the public. The organisation is also exploring the option of supported workspace for start-ups, along with volunteering and skills development opportunities.

The project has also received over £2.5 million in funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and from Historic England’s High Street Heritage Action Zone in Redruth, where the Buttermarket is a key focus. The AHF grant will fund an extensive programme of conservation, repair, and refurbishment of the Buttermarket complex, protecting the historic building fabric from further decay and loss.

Heritage Minister, Nigel Huddleston, said:

“This Government is helping transform fascinating local heritage into community hubs, providing funding for businesses and bringing people together. I'm delighted that these six projects will be receiving grants from our brilliant Transforming Places Through Heritage scheme.”

In addition to this award to the Buttermarket, five more capital grants have been awarded through Transforming Places through Heritage:

St Peter & the Old Black Lion Inn, Northampton (The Churches Conservation Trust)

The Old Black Lion Inn is a Grade II-listed pub dating back to the 17th century. Ceasing trading in 2008, the pub has remained vacant since, and forms a group alongside the adjacent Grade I-listed, 11th-century St Peter’s Church. The church closed in 1995 and is now used as a community asset managed by the Churches Conservation Trust, hosting concerts, educational and social events. However, its capacity is restricted by the limited facilities it can offer. The proposal for this project is to utilise the Black Lion as space for new hospitality facilities in partnership with the church. The AHF grant will fund the repair and restoration of the pub, including specialist conservation works.

Transformational Project Grant - £110,153

Becket’s Chapel, Wymondham (Norfolk Historic Buildings Trust - NHBT)

Becket’s Chapel is a Grade I-listed building dedicated to St Thomas Becket. The main chapel is constructed of flint rubble with limestone quoins, window tracery and corbels. The surviving fabric, including the windows and hammer beam roof, dates from the 15th century. This project aims to bring the Chapel into the ownership and stewardship of NHBT and deliver a comprehensive package of repairs needed to remove it from the Heritage at Risk Register. It will also secure its use as a community arts centre run by the Wymondham Arts Forum CIO. The AHF grant will contribute to essential repairs that will enable safe access and use by the local community.

Transformational Project Grant - £100,000

Stanley Halls, Croydon (Stanley Arts)

Stanley Halls is a Grade II-listed cluster of buildings, designed by inventor and local philanthropist William Ford Stanley as a utopian civic project for the betterment of South Norwood. Throughout the 20th century, the Halls hosted an array of community events. Stanley Arts was set up to revive the Halls for the local community after they fell out of use. The current vision is that the Halls step back into the role William Stanley originally envisaged – as a centre for the arts and incubator of collaboration and innovation. The AHF grant will contribute towards the repair and refit of the Gallery, bringing it into regular daytime use.

Transformational Project Grant - £60,500

2-4 Market Place, Caistor (Caistor and District Community Trust Ltd - CDCT)

This project consists of a complex of five 17th-century buildings, which are situated around two courtyards and range in height from two to three storeys. CDCT aim to repair all five buildings on site and bring them back into use, with plans to create retail units, offices and workspaces, meetings room, storage space for the town’s archival material, and self-catering holiday lets. The AHF grant will help fund costs for repair and refurbishment.

Transformational Project Grant - £200,000

The Branch, Chipping Norton (The Branch Trust)

The Branch is a Grade II*-listed former bank overlooking the market square in Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire. The Branch Trust aims to restore the building into a thriving community hub, comprising of a café, community access facilities, offices, and outreach services. Once completed, The Branch aspires to be a model of community collaboration and engagement that could be replicated elsewhere. The AHF grant will fund the restoration and repair of the 18th-century roof structure, façade, and first-floor main range, as well as the refurbishment of all floors.

Transformational Project Grant - £100,000


Image Credits

Redruth Revival CIC

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