Grant brings new life to Newport key buildings
Written by BBC News on February 19, 2019
Three of Newport’s community buildings are undergoing significant improvements, benefiting those living, working and visiting Newport following a grant from the Telford 50 Legacy Fund.
The fund is part of a £2m Telford & Wrekin Council scheme, which gives £150,000 to each of the borough’s five main towns, including Newport, as part of Telford’s 50th anniversary celebrations.
Newport Town Council is spending its grant on refurbishing three key community buildings and has also committed to provide match funding of over £36,000.
The Guildhall, a central prestigious grade II * listed building, which dates back to 1486 and hosts a variety of events (weddings, civil ceremonies, public meetings, school trips) will see a wide range of improvements including to its paintwork, heating, lighting and other facilities, subject to planning approval. Work has already started with the installation of a new boiler and of new carpets and more is expected to be completed in the next weeks, ensuring conservation requirements (specific to the building) are also met.
Sheila Atkinson Town Clerk said: “This is a prestigious and historic building that’s a focal point for Newport. The Building needs to be preserved, carefully and sympathetically maintained to ensure the continued use and historic presence in Newport. As such, we are really grateful for the Telford 50 Legacy grant received (£72,400) – this is likely to make the Guildhall an even more attractive venue for a wider range of events and activities while further enhancing Newport’s heritage.”
The Guildhall is joining in with the National Heritage Open days on Saturday 21st September 2019, which will be an opportunity for members of the public to visit the Listed Building.
The second building to benefit is the Scout HQ on Longford Road which already has seen a significant roof refurbishment with the help of a £25,200 grant.
Liz Metcalfe, Group Scout Leader said: “It’s important to have a suitable and modern centre where our Scout Group can meet throughout the year. The work carried out thanks to the Telford 50 Legacy Fund is part of renewing our centre – so other local groups will be able to use the building, and make full use of its upgraded facilities.”
The third building supported by the fund, with £48,000, is The Hub at 139 High Street, which is also home to Nova FM. Louise Tunks, Deputy Town Clerk said “Newport Town Council have recently become Trustees of the Hub and that a significant refurbishment to our centre will be commencing in the next few weeks to include major internal refurbishment comprising of roof works, electrics, plumbing, flooring and new IT equipment. All these are set to create an even more engaging and fit for purpose venue for young people and attract other groups to use the building.”
Newport Town Mayor, Cllr Peter Scott said: “Without the Telford 50 Legacy grant we wouldn’t have been able to deliver these improvements to these important community buildings in Newport, which are used by many people and groups in the town. It will help secure their future for generations to come. I am really thankful to Newport Town Council and Telford & Wrekin Council for their support.”
Council Leader Shaun Davies said: “Newport is among the five borough’s main towns that the Telford 50 legacy grant supports – as with the other Town Councils, we welcome the funding being used for people to enjoy community buildings and facilities long into the future. That’s among the legacy of Telford’s 50th anniversary year.”
The £2 million Telford 50 Legacy Fund supports a mix of physical schemes as well as other projects that help tackle key social issues in the borough and reduce demand on council services.