Senior council officials from two Derbyshire authorities recently played host to a special visit from the Chair of English Heritage – Baroness Kay Andrews OBE.
Organised by High Peak Borough Council and Derbyshire County Council – the visit gave the town of Buxton the opportunity to show-off the exciting transformation of its most iconic and historic buildings.
Highlighting the regeneration led programme of Buxton, the day’s events included a tour of the former Paxton Suite now transformed into the new Pavilion Arts Centre and the new Derby University campus created from the Grade II* former Devonshire Royal Hospital.
Baroness Andrews was also shown the repair of Edward Milner’s original cast iron frame structure to the conservatory and the work to enhance the setting of the Opera House and the restoration of his Grade II* registered gardens under the Urban Parks Programme.
One of the highlights of the day was the chance to view the Buxton Crescent & Thermal Spa project and the work recently started there. Meeting with Trevor Osborne (Chairman, The Osborne Group) and John Smith (Director, CP Holdings) the Baroness was given an overview of the project and treated to a viewing of the Great Ballroom and ground floor of the Natural Baths.
Council leader Caitlin Bisknell said: “The Baroness was visibly impressed with what she saw and was pleased that English Heritage had played its part in the £70 million regeneration programme that has been going on in the town over the last 25-30 years.
“Without organisations like English Heritage and the Heritage Lottery Fund – and of course funding from our partners – none of these projects would have been possible. It’s lovely to be given the opportunity to show how the money has been used and the fantastic results that have been achieved. All this of course contributes to the vibrancy of the town and its future economic development – vital in this current financial climate.”
Baroness Kay Andrews OBE, Chair of English Heritage said: “I was incredibly impressed with the regeneration of Buxton and it’s a great example of how English Heritage funding can be used to positive effect.
“It is also wonderful news that work has started on the Buxton Crescent. This important building remains on our Heritage at Risk register, but it is reassuring to know that the first stage of this ambitious project is now underway. I am delighted to say that through the grant we have offered, English Heritage is continuing to support the restoration of Buxton’s heritage – the Crescent is one of its greatest assets for the town’s future prosperity.”
Notes to Editor
Photograph to accompany the release. Caption should read: Baroness Kay Andrews, Chair of English Heritage.
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