Work begins to restore Tolpuddle Old Chapel

By News
Exterior of Tolpuddle Old Chapel

After more than six years of dedicated hard work by trustees, volunteers, project managers, consultants, architects, Friends and financial sponsors, Tolpuddle Old Chapel Trust (TOCT) is finally in a position to realise its vision of renovating and extending Tolpuddle Old Chapel.

With funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Historic England and various other sources, work to save this historically significant Grade II* listed building started at the beginning of November.  The major restoration project will remove the building from the Historic England At Risk register and save it as a community asset for future generations.

As well as the conservation work to the original Chapel, the project will create a new extension to support events and include a year round programme of activities and interpretation, a pilot schools programme and various volunteering opportunities

 

TOCT Chair, Andrew McCarthy, said:

“We are delighted that we can now being work to secure the future of the Chapel and the stories it tells. We are hugely grateful to all our funders and supporters and the many volunteers who have helped us to get to this point.  Now the work really begins and there will be a whole range of new opportunities for people to get involved.  We’d love to hear from anyone interested in helping us to ensure that this important historic building achieves its full potential.”

Stuart McLeod, Director London & South at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said:

“We are delighted to support Tolpuddle Old Chapel Trust in fulfilling its ambition to restore Tolpuddle Old Chapel and open it up to a wider range of people. Thanks to National Lottery players, this historically significant Grade II* listed building is going to be preserved for many more generations to enjoy while an exciting programme of activities as well as volunteering opportunities are going to drive engagement for the local community.”

Ross Simmonds, Acting Regional Director at Historic England, said:

“We are delighted that work is now under way to save this very important but modest earth building. We have been working closely with the TOCT in recent years to better understand the conservation needs of the building, and have recently confirmed a grant of up to £160,000 to support necessary repairs to the fabric of the Old Chapel.

For more information on the project please visit www.tolpuddleoldchapeltrust.org or email info@tolpuddleoldchapeltrust.org

 

Image: The Chapel after emergency repairs in 2015.

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