Derbyshire Historic Buildings Trust newsletter may 2020

Chair's introduction

May 2020

Dear Friends and volunteers,

Welcome to our May 2020 Newsletter. I hope you are still safe and well, despite this horrid Covid-19.

Whilst our social activities have been suspended we continue to press for action on historic buildings at risk and we are also making progress on the rescue of Wingfield Station. If you are not too busy simultaneously working and home schooling, then please read on to see what we have been up to.

We are still seeking volunteers to help us both with our administration and promotion, as well as our projects, so do please contact Lucy, our executive officer and our current newsletter editor, who, despite being exceptionally efficient and effective in her role, still needs all the help she can get!

If your membership is due for renewal, please do take advantage of our offer of 18months for the price of 12 as a ‘thank you’ for your continued support during this difficult time.

Yours ever,

Derek Latham (DHBT Chair)

(Banner image above from the Long Mill at Darley Abbey Mills. Patterns Developments Ltd was awarded 'The Deborah Devonshire Award' at the DHBT 2019 Architecture Awards for this impressive restoration project).

wingfield station - Project update

Historic England Repair Grant for Heritage at Risk -

Funding Success!

Wingfield Station, 2017

Amidst all the concerns and complexities of the current pandemic, we received some much-needed good news this month. DHBT has been successful in securing a grant from Historic England from their 'Repair Grants for Heritage at Risk' scheme. This funding will allow us to undertake urgent repair work sooner rather than later; ensuring any further degradation to the Station and Parcel Store is halted in good time.

The first phase of the grant (£20k) is for development project costs relating to the preparation of architectural plans for re-roofing and essential trackside works, surveys and the preparation of the capital works tender documentation.

For the second phase, we have an in-principle grant offer of £243k towards eligible repair costs. This amount will be confirmed once we have satisfactorily completed the project development work and when the procurement process indicates the exact costs required. Historic England and others will work closely with DHBT to agree the overall conservation approach to the buildings.

Repair work will include the erection of scaffolding to the west elevations (plus the significant associated costs to Network Rail for possessions and related admin); roof works to the Station and Parcel Store (including roof coverings and the removal, repair and replacement of chimney stacks); stonework repairs to the western elevations; window and door replacements and repairs on the western elevation; the repair or replacement of rainwater downpipes; the removal of all rotten internal lintels and works to improve the access to the driveway, including tree and vegetation removal and improvements to visibility splays.

Our current timetable anticipates the submission of our Planning and Listed Building Consent applications by the end of August. We then hope to go out to tender for the construction works in October. All being well, this should then lead to the repair works starting during Spring 2021 and concluding by June 2021.

Our existing National Lottery Heritage Fund project is still very much progressing in parallel with this programme. Indeed, it is providing match-funding for some of the Historic England repair works along with professional fees and some of the survey costs. The only change as a result of this news is that we now intend to submit our second round application to the Heritage Fund in June 2021 (once the repair works are complete) instead of November 2020. The second round application to the Heritage Fund will cover the rest of the conservation and repair works along with other associated project costs. We will still need to raise additional funds to contribute towards the remaining costs of the project.

In other project news, an application has been lodged with Amber Valley Borough Council for consent to remove the yew hedge and self-seeded saplings in the immediate proximity of the station buildings. This work is necessary to enable the full topographical and building recording surveys to be undertaken at the earliest possible date.

Wingfield station - significance revealed

DHBT has recently appointed Mel Morris of Mel Morris Conservation to produce an Outline Conservation Plan and a Heritage Impact Assessment for the Wingfield Station project. Working with the project team, Mel has been undertaking extensive research (despite the frustrations of not being able to visit the Derbyshire Record Office and other similar repositories that are closed) and consequently revealing important information and details that are helping us to understand and interpret the site and it's significance.

A baseline conservation philosophy (i.e. the philosophical approach that seeks to understand what people value about a historic building and uses this to ensure any work undertaken does as little harm as possible to the characteristics that hold or express those values) is now being developed. This will reflect and respect the unique significance of the site.

As a consequence of this work it is evident that the project needs to be carried out within the context of the desirability of revealing a narrative of the station's life. Research is telling us that the station has had essentially three phases:

  1. The pioneer phase
  2. The post pioneer and industrial phase
  3. The British Rail and post closure phase.

With regards to phase 1, research is highlighting the significance of the principal building with regard to its aesthetic/cultural qualities. These exceptional qualities being, most probably, a result of the need to mitigate the impact of a large and intrusive engineering project into a sensitive and widely admired historic and scenic landscape.

The exceptional nature and quality of the architectural design and it's chronological position at the very beginning of railway development in the UK has led us to believe that there is a strong case for its restoration to Francis Thompson's original design - and, therefore, without the addition of a link to the (later) Parcel Store building.

As this research work continues, it will also feed into the interpretation that we will implement across the site with the support of others. In coming weeks we hope to work with volunteers and the South Wingfield Local History Group to identify the key themes and stories and communicate these in creative ways.

have your say

Although we cannot go ahead with our community consultation events that we had planned for the Spring/early Summer, we are still keen to capture any questions and thoughts about the Wingfield Station project that you might have. You can read more about this in our previous Project Update (as well as downloading resources such as the Volunteer Enquiry Form and finding out how you can make a donation to the project).

We have enjoyed reading some of your comments submitted to date. One such question asked about why the station is not being restored and re-opened as an operational railway station; good question! We are grateful for this suggestion and, given that DHBT will initially focus on undertaking the required Urgent Works (as specified by Amber Valley District Council in consultation with Historic England) to create safe, water tight and weather-proof structures, we have a year in which we would be able to consult with the Department of Transport to assess the likelihood of a viable re-opening of the station to passenger traffic.

We'd still love to hear from you, even though we can't currently meet in person, and we would welcome any further questions or comments about this project via our online survey link:

The South Wingfield Local History Group meeting with the Project Team earlier in 2020

special offer: 'friends of dhbt' subscriptions & renewals - 6 months free

As a charity we rely on the generous support of people like yourself; especially during these challenging times when many of our other sources of income are no longer available to us.

Since 1974 DHBT has been working to rescue, repair and protect many historic buildings throughout Derbyshire. We recognise the need to balance our own need for funds with responsibility towards our valued supporters, which is why we are offering you the chance to renew your annual subscription for 2020 for just £25 with 6 months free.

As you may have seen, many of our walks, talks and events for this year have had to be postponed. However, we are monitoring government guidelines closely and continue to review our programme. The safety of our volunteers, friends and local communities remains our priority but we are hopeful that we will be able to reschedule dates in the future. For those of you that had purchased tickets, you will be the first to be offered the chance to re-book.

By renewing your subscription you will receive:

* Regular e-newsletters and information to keep you up to date with our latest projects

* Priority bookings for our talks, walks and tours of Derbyshire historic buildings

* Discounted tickets to our social events

* Access to free initial advice on the maintenance, repair and/or alteration of an historic building

* An invitation to our annual Architecture Awards ceremony.

You can find out more about some of past events via our Blog. These include our magical Christmas Event at Florence Nightingale's former family home; a late summer gathering at Haddon Hall (which included a spine-tingling recital by DHBT's very own trustee and counter tenor, Oliver Gerrish); a fascinating walk with The Derbyshire Wildlife Trust in Lea Wood; an informative tour of Wirksworth's hidden treasures and a guided walk around Spital Chapel last September.

The simplest way to renew your subscription is via our secure online payment facility. If you are able to, ticking the Gift Aid check-box can add up to 25% on to your donation. You can choose to make this an annual donation.

Other payment methods are detailed here. If you would prefer to pay by cheque, please send this to us along with a completed 'Friend of DHBT Application' form.

As a non-profit registered charity, which receives no government or local authority financial support, your subscription renewal will make a real difference. Thank you.

Architecture awards

2020 applications now open

Applications for DHBT's third Architecture Awards are now open. The Awards offer the opportunity to celebrate and acknowledge some of the best architectural and conservation projects in the county.

To be eligible, the scheme must be in Derbyshire, and reached practical completion by 31st August 2020. For the purpose of the Awards, the term 'historic' is defined as a building that is pre-World War II. The deadline for entering is 31st August 2020.

There are a number of different categories to enter under:

* Restoration of a public building

* Restoration of an historic interior

* Restoration of an historic building in an urban setting

* Reuse of an historic building

* Restoration of an historic garden or landscape

* New building in the historic tradition

* New building in a historic context

* Campaign to save historic architecture

2019 Award Winners

Restoration of an historic building in an urban setting:

Joint winners: New Bath Hotel, owner Ahmad Jajbhay; and Ashbourne Town Hall - Guy Taylor Associates for Ashbourne Town Council.

Commended: Coach House at Cavendish Hotel - Haxton Koyander Architecture Ltd for Chatsworth Settlement Trustees.

Reuse of an historic building:

Winner: Wirksworth Heritage Centre - Latham Architects for Wirksworth Heritage Trust.

Commended: Armsgate, Melbourne - Matthew Montague Architects for Stanton Developments.

Commended: The Cosy Club, Derby - David Bland (external works), Richard Pedlar Architects (for the Cosy Club) and Greenhill Construction Ltd for Clowes Developments.

New building in an historic setting:

Winner: The dining hall at Foremark Hall - Matthew Montague Architects for Foremark Hall School.

Commended: Stackyard Cottage - James Boon Architects.

Conservation Champion:

Jason Skipper for his work in restoring the Lido at the New Bath Hotel, Matlock Bath.

Deborah Devonshire Award for an outstanding overall project:

Long Mill at Darley Abbey Mills - CTD Architects for Patterns Developments Ltd.

Photograph of 2019 'Conservation Champion' Jason Skipper (courtesy of Derbyshire Life magazine).

celebrating DHBT's rich history

Maxwell Craven has re-drafted and updated DHBT's history

Renowned author and historian, Maxwell Craven MBE, FSA, AMA, has revised, up-dated and re-written the history of Derbyshire Historic Buildings Trust from the previous booklet produced by the late Joan Sinar ('Derbyshire Historic Buildings Trust - The First 20 Years').

Maxwell, who is DHBT's honorary historian, has written extensively on architecture and antiques. He is a particular expert in the buildings, sources and archives of Derby and the Derbyshire region.

Everyone involved with DHBT is extremely grateful to Maxwell for his ongoing contribution and for producing this informative and detailed history.

You can download Maxwell's draft here.


Selection of images taken from the Friends of Aqueduct Cottage Facebook page

A county without old buildings is like a family without a memory.

The Derbyshire Historic Buildings Trust, since its inception in 1974 has promoted the care, conservation, and, where applicable, the creative re-use of our built heritage. Unfortunately, some buildings become disused, neglected and in need of repair. Such ”Buildings At Risk” are in danger of demolition, and some have been lost.

Though small, and apparently beyond rescue, none is more important than Aqueduct Cottage on the Cromford Canal. Its association with Peter Nightingale (Richard Arkwright’s financial partner, who constructed the Lea Bridge arm of the canal and cottage to serve his own business) is reinforced by his construction of Lea Hurst on the hill behind where his nephew's daughter, Florence Nightingale, was to grow up. It is inconceivable that the residents of the cottage were not known to Florence, who enjoyed walking the grounds of the hall and the countryside around.

The acquisition of this cottage as part of the adjacent woodland by the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust, supported by the local community was a brave and visionary first step. The DHBT, in partnership, saw the need to not just retain the ruin but gain planning permission towards a use that would support the interpretation of the land and the building, and hopefully to provide power through a micro hydro-electric plant.

However, nothing could have been achieved by either Trust without the determination and hard work of the many volunteers, led by Ron Common, who have undertaken research, raised awareness, cleared the site, sought funds and repaired the shell of the building.

Though yet to be complete, it is appropriate that, at this time of enforced pause in activity, which coincides with the 200th anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale, we take a moment to celebrate what has been achieved.

Congratulations to all involved. I feel certain that were Florence to be here today she would have fully approved, and probably supported its restoration. The DHBT look forward toward the completion of the project and will continue in its support.

Derek Latham, May 2020

If you don't already follow The Friends of Aqueduct Cottage on Facebook, we would certainly recommend taking a look. Currently, there are over 2000 members and the number is still growing, such is the appeal of the cottage - its background, setting and the efforts to save it.

Leaving a legacy

Leaving a gift to DHBT in your will, no matter the size, enables us to continue our work - even a small donation can make a big difference.

Legacies and donations - large or small - play a critical role in helping us continue our work to ensure the architectural gems of Derbyshire survive.

A gift in your will is also called a 'legacy' or 'bequest'. If you do not already have a will in place, you will need to consult a solicitor who can guide you through the process and explain the options regarding gifts. Alternatively, if you do already have a will and would like to include a gift to DHBT, a solicitor will also be able to advise you on making a revision to your will, known as a codicil.

Currently, all legacies to charities, including DHBT, are free from Inheritance Tax. If your estate is subject to Inheritance Tax then the rate of this can be reduced from 40% to 36% if certain conditions are met. It is important to consult a solicitor to advise you on these rules.

Making a will is one of the most positive things you can do. It offers you peace of mind; securing the future of your loved ones and the things that you care about. A will ensures that your estate is divided as you choose, providing for your family and, if you wish, a charity or charities of your choice.

You can leave a legacy to DHBT whether you are making a will for the first time or making an addition to an existing will. DHBT advises anyone making a will or legacy to take legal advice. If you would like to speak to someone at DHBT to discuss a possible donation, please contact us at: office@derbyshirehistoricbuildingstrust.org.uk