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MUSEUM RELOCATION

8th MAY 2024 UPDATE:

A reply to our bid has been received. While the local Methodist Circuit are supportive of the Cornerstone Chapel remaining in use by a community enterprise, the national church trustees have decided they are not in a position to hold the property for any single purchaser while they raise funds, so the plan to place the building on the open market shall continue.   The museum group has therefore decided to take a proactive step and mount a major fundraising campaign now, in the hopes of placing a successful bid when allowed to do so. We have nominated the chapel to be registered as an Asset of Community Value with Malvern Hills District Council, which if accepted would allow us to enact the ‘Community Right to Bid’ once the chapel is on the open market. It would provide a six-month moratorium to allow finances to be raised by a community enterprise such as the museum group, although we acknowledge that this could still prove unsuccessful. The Cornerstone Methodist Chapel is the only viable solution to securing a stable future for the museum and its increasingly fragile collection. See our Donations page for ways to help plus there will shortly be collection tins located around the town - we will notify the public when they are in position.  If you think there should remain a museum in Tenbury please consider donating.

8th April 2024

Frustratingly, the last 12 months have seen much discussion but little progress. Dialogue with representatives of The David & Christine Lloyd-Jones Foundation regrettably proved unsuccessful with their interest instead being drawn to an alternative Tenbury project.  We sincerely wish it every success and, if realised, hope it will provide much-improved facilities for the town.

 When one door closes another one opens, and talks were subsequently held with representatives of the Cornerstone Methodist Chapel - soon to be placed on the open market. The site comprises of two unlisted buildings, needing much less remedial work than the Old Fire Station and offers the capacity for the museum to hold more community engagement events, alongside the daily opening of the museum. A purchase by the museum would enable the Chapel to continue being used by the local community with its unique interior features remaining accessible and out of danger from demolition. The Church Trustees declined our initial purchase offer but we have subsequently submitted a second that is equal to their own valuation/asking price. We are currently awaiting their decision on the matter and once again we're keeping everything crossed!  Should the sale be agreed, it would be subject to a 12-month funding initiative, comprising of a much lower national lottery grant, the museum group’s own financial contribution and match-funding raised through activities and kind donations from Tenbury’s residents and businesses.    As a larger, more visible and accessible building, the Cornerstone would enable the museum to attract more visitors ….which can only be good news for the town.

 

8th March 2023
Since their decision in December 2021, the museum group have continued to heed the advice of the National Lottery Heritage Fund and have engaged with heritage consultants regarding the resubmission of a second funding application.

We regret to report, however, that due to the rising costs of materials post Covid plus the stringent stipulations of the National Lottery Heritage Fund itself, the relocation to the Old Fire Station is no longer viable. A new overall project cost of £1 million pounds and possibly more, has been estimated - a figure out of proportion to the size of building and one we cannot hope to meet.

Realising this and needing to secure the future of the museum, we submitted a formal proposal to Tenbury Town Council for the museum to relocate to the historic pump rooms, seen by many of our members and visitors as the museum’s ‘natural home.’ At their meeting in July 2022 Town Councillors voted to approve the move in principle, subject to alternative accommodation being found for their office and meeting room. To date we have not been advised of any such accommodation being sought or found, so we are to remain at Goff’s School – an isolated and unsuitable building that is adversely affecting the condition of the museum’s collection.

We continue to be diligent in our duties and have approached a new, local Foundation introduced to us by the Town Mayor, Eric Hudson. Along with other Tenbury projects, we submitted an  application to the Foundation's trustees via their chosen agents in August 2022 for funds to relocate either to the Old Fire Station or the Pump Rooms, but was refused. Following a subsequent meeting with representatives from the museum and Tenbury Town Council their agents seemed keen to help the museum further and expressed an interest in any potential funding to the town being directed via the museum.  Ongoing talks are proving to be frustratingly slow, but we hope to be able to give a more positive update of this new option in the near future.

12th December 2021

Following a strong bid submission from the Tenbury Museum Trustees, the National Lottery Heritage Fund has declined our initial application. They have, however, acknowledged the necessity for the museum to move premises in order to protect the collection and are offering to meet with the Trustees in the new year.  We hope further guidance will be given on how to strengthen our case on resubmission.  Whilst the Trustees are very disappointed in not succeeding in this first application attempt, this is in no way an unusual outcome, as many similar organisations have achieved a successful result at a later stage.   

There continues to be strong support from the general public and followers on social media and the Trustees remain fully committed to achieving their goal to provide a heritage based centre that will ensure the history of Tenbury is preserved for future generations.    The work goes on!

 

23rd August 2021

Today, the museum trustees finally submitted their formal grant application to the National Lottery Heritage Fund ahead of the 25th August deadline. The Trustees wish to thank its project support, Sam Hine from Communities Can, the museum volunteers, local residents and businesses and the many advisors who gave of their time and expertise to make this possible.  We will not hear from the NLHF of their decision until mid December, so we're keeping our fingers and everything crossed till then for a positive outcome.

April 2021

National Lottery Heritage Fund finally reopened its Grant scheme in February. While their criteria have changed we are confident that our project matches them. A mandatory Expression of Interest was submitted in March and received approval so  we are now working towards submitting our full bid for the next round of 25th August; the outcome of which will not be know till the Winter. Unfortunately, the Covid crisis has set our project back by at least 12 months.

18th December 2020

Planning Application approval received today from Malvern Hills District Council. We are now in a good position to submit our bid for a National Lottery Heritage Grant when the process reopens in Spring 2021.

Our grateful thanks to Mark Newall of Baart Harries & Newall Architects, our MHDC representatives and all our local supporters. Some good news to end a miserable year.

26th July 2020

Planning Application ref: 20/00994/FUL has now been submitted to Malvern Hills District Council Planning Department. Site notices were posted on 26th July and will remain in-situ until 20th August.
Local community members are able to submit their comments of support for the project on MHDC planning portal and would be gratefully appreciated. 

12th April 2020     (Grant Application delay)

Owing to the Coronavirus outbreak, the National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF formally Heritage Lottery Fund or HLF) has reordered their funding policies to help the broader emergency requirement.  As a result they have suspended all new applications for a period.  We are continuing to plan for our funding bid so that we will be ready to respond quickly when they are restored.  As a result progress is delayed for an as yet unknown period.

Review of Open Meeting held 12th February 2020

We would like to thank everyone who attended the public open meeting held at Tenbury Community Centre detailing our latest aspirational plans and designs for a move to the old Fire Station, Teme Street.  Following a presentation by the architect, Mark Newall,  there was an engaging discussion with valid questions being asked by residents, councillors and business owners and hopefully we calmed any concerns felt. We were overwhelmed and encouraged by the support and good will shown by Tenbury residents and we hope to update you with our progress in the near future. 

13th - 18th September 2019:  
Three architects were interviewed on 13th September in a bid for the contract. We are pleased to announce that as of 18th September BAART HARRIES NEWALL ARCHITECTS (BHN) have been appointed to the project.

August 2019:

The following press release was been issued regarding the possible relocation of the Museum.  We hope this will be the first post put on the website  and also on our Facebook.  As we progress further information will be put on Facebook and the Website.

Exciting plans in the pipeline for Tenbury Museum

Following a number of years considering the future for Tenbury Museum, plans are beginning to develop for an exciting future in a new town centre location. The Tenbury Museum and History Group Trustees have been in discussion with Tesco regarding the Old Fire Station building at the entrance to the town. Agreement has now been reached in principle to a long lease, subject to securing planning permission and funding to undertake the necessary capital works to renovate and convert the building into a Museum and Local History Resource Centre. 

Liz Finlay, Chair of the Trustees said, “This is a really exciting time for the Museum and History Group.  A Condition Survey on the Old Fire Station building has been completed so our next task is to appoint architects to help us draw up the designs for the conversion so that we can apply for planning permission.

We will then need to raise the necessary funding to undertake the work. It has been a long held aspiration for the Museum to move to a central location and more suitable premises. We hope the Old Fire Station will enable us to achieve our ambitions for the museum and the town.”  The Museum and History Group has recently secured an Awards for All grant from the National Lottery towards the costs of the architect fees.

Liz said, “Once we’ve appointed architects we’ll be organising opportunities for local people to find out more about the project. If anyone would like to get involved in the project or as a volunteer at the Museum please get in touch via the volunteer page on our website, we are always looking for more people to join us.”

 

Photo shows: Tenbury Wells Museum & History Group Trustees outside The Old Fire Station

l-r Tracey Morris; Liz Finlay; David Patrick; Phil Rees; Mike Thompson; Monica Rees

Future Proposal.jpg
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