Oakham Castle celebrates successful £2 million HLF bid
One of the most popular tourist attractions in the East Midlands is celebrating after being successful in applying for a £2 million grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
Oakham Castle has been awarded the money that will be used to carry out extensive restoration work, introduce a new and exciting events programme, as well as provide opportunity to host re-enactments and living history.
In 2012 Rutland County Council (RCC), Oakham Town Council, and the Friends of Rutland County Museum & Oakham Castle, together with the support of community groups and English Heritage, formed a Project Board to drive forward improvements and restoration of the Castle. After months of hard work from all the partners, the final HLF bid was submitted earlier this year.
Council Leader Roger Begy: “Good things come in threes, and this is a really great week for Rutland and Oakham Castle, with a visit from The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, the first Horseshoe Presentation for nine years, and the announcement of our bid being approved
It’s hard to put into words how delighted everyone at the council and on the Board is to have our bid approved by the Heritage Lottery Fund. We knew from the outset that this was an extremely competitive process and we have given 110% on behalf of the local community to make this happen. It is very proud day for Rutland.”
Councillor Begy added: “The hard work starts now and we are very clear that this funding will be used for more than just protecting the past. We are looking to widen the reach of Oakham Castle and look to what we can do in the future to develop new things for visitors to see and do.”
Vanessa Harbar, Head of HLF East Midlands said: “Oakham Castle is, without doubt, one of Rutland’s finest heritage treasures. The stunning Great Hall is home to a unique collection of horse shoes dating from the 12th century, it attracts thousands of visitors every year. We felt it was timely to support essential restoration work to the site and also support the Council’s plans to refresh the complementary activity and education programmes. Once the project is completed, we are confident the castle and historic town will continue to draw in both established as well as new visitors to the area.”
In addition to the plans for extensive restoration work and additional events… other areas identified for improvement are repair of the castle walls, new and improved toilet facilities, better information and signage, and improved facilities for weddings and family events.
Oakham Castle is the best preserved Norman Great Hall in England and was used extensively until 1970 as the local court. Occasional Crown Courts and Coroner’s Inquests still take place.
Find out more
For more information about the project, please visit the Oakham Castle website.
Read the full Bid Successful article.
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