Canal and River Trust sees hundredfold growth in volunteering hours

The Canal and River Trust (CRT), formerly the quango British Waterways, has seen volunteering rise almost a hundredfold since the start of the decade, but lost money on fundraising, its most recent accounts show.

CRT writes:

According to the charity’s annual report and accounts published this week, the CRT saw a rise in income across the board in the year. Total income was £189.7m, compared to £183.2m the previous year. This was largely due to a rise in the charity’s block grant from government – up to £49.6m from £39m the previous year.

The charity also saw the value of its property portfolio rise by £39.6m. 

Volunteering growth

The Canal and River Trust – formerly the quango British Waterways – span out of government in 2012. At the time volunteers contributed 20,000 hours a year, according to then-chief executive Richard Parry. At the start of the decade it was 5,000 hours.

‘Our willing and dedicated volunteers gave us nearly 482,000 hours of their time during 2015/16, up 17 per cent on the previous year,’ the charity said. ‘Of this, our young volunteers aged 16 to 25 spent over 36,000 hours of time to help clear up our waterways and enhance the visitor experience. This commitment is worth the equivalent of £7.6 million to the Trust. 88 per cent of our volunteers would also recommend volunteering at the Trust to others.’ 

Fundraising growing slowly

However the charity is still a long way from its goal – at the time of spin-out – of growing giving to £20m a year. Last year the charity spent £3.6m on raising funds but received only £2.5m in donations and legacies.

The previous year the charity spent £2.7m on raising funds but received £1.6m of income. 

Read more in Civil Society news

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Local bid to have Victorian hall in Hull listed rejected

Attempts by local residents to get a Hull city centre Victorian warehouse, Braves Hall, listed for its historic importance have been rejected with the building set to be demolished to improve setting of new venue.

The Hull Daily Mail writes:

‘Adam Fowler, of the City of Hull Environment Forum, submitted the application for listed status.  He said: ‘Unfortunately, the request has been turned down. While they (Heritage England [sic]) said Braves Hall was probably of local interest, it did not meet the necessary criteria for a national listing. I think it’s a shame because it is an interesting building and one of the few remaining types of its kind in Hull.’

Braves Hall’s distinctive four-storey cast iron-framed building dates back to the 1850s.  Originally built as a warehouse to service the nearby Princes Dock, it takes its name from the Hull Guild for Brave Poor Things, a charity which moved into the property in the 1920s.’

Read more….

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Plans for UK’s ‘first pedestrianised shopping precinct’ makeover

Plans have been submitted to Tower Hamlets Council to create a mixed-use scheme to reinvigorate Chrisp Street Market in Poplar east London, a pioneering pedestrian retail precinct with housing above, part of which was the UK’s first-ever pedestrianised shopping precinct designed in part by Frederick Gibberd and built as part of the Festival of Britain Exhibition of Architecture in 1951.

Sheppard Robson writes:

Sheppard Robson has submitted plans to the London Borough of Tower Hamlets to create a new community-focused, mixed-use project that will reinvigorate Chrisp Street Market. The plans for Telford Homes Plc and local housing association Poplar HARCA will ensure this community asset continues to thrive, with the design carefully drawing together a mix of residential, retail and cultural facilities positioned around improved and enlarged public spaces.

The ambition of the project continues the site’s history of innovation. Designed in part by Frederick Gibberd and built as part of the Festival of Britain Exhibition of Architecture in 1951, the north side of Chrisp Street Market was a pioneering pedestrian retail precinct with housing above, which will all be retained and integrated. This spirit of bold ideas is used as a starting point for Sheppard Robson’s designs for the wider site.

Sheppard Robson’s masterplan follows a thorough consultation process, which has seen the practice fine tune the proposal. The final design is a well composed response to the cultural and architectural identity of the surrounding context, with a coherent vision that binds together a genuinely mixed-use and holistic plan for the site, as well as an improved connectivity with the surrounding area.

In addition to retaining and enhancing the setting of the Festival of Britain heritage assets, the masterplan includes: creating around 650 high-quality, tenure-blind new homes with no net loss of social rent homes; building on the success of the cultural assets of the site, which will see the extension of the popular Idea Store; supporting the existing traders with an enhanced retail offer, which includes a new marketplace with canopy, around 200,000 sq ft of retail and a new food store; and community spaces that include a six-screen cinema, affordable work space and a new community venue.

Dan Burr, Partner at Sheppard Robson, said: ‘Chrisp Street has innovation in its foundations, with the original Frederick Gibberd design sustaining the market for the last 65 years. Continuing this spirit of boldness, we wanted our proposals to be the next phase of exemplar urban design in the area, giving the market a new lease of life through enhanced community facilities.  The fundamental challenge of the project was to weave together a broad mix of uses, carefully choreographing a sequence of urban spaces that are defined by a rich mix of architectural forms.’ 

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Natural England opens the latest stretch of England Coast Path in Middlesbrough

Sixty eight miles of sign posted National Trail will give walkers new and improved access and connect the urban heartland of Teesside to its open coast.

The continuous route starts at Filey Brigg and passes north through the popular resorts of Scarborough and Whitby, Saltburn and Redcar, providing stunning views of the North York Moors and coastline. It follows much of the well-known coastal section of Cleveland Way National Trail with improvements to the route.

Natural England is currently establishing a 2,700-mile path around the entire English coastline by 2020 and work is already under way on 60 per cent of the route. When completed, it will be the longest continuous coastal walking route in the world. It will also become a National Trail – the nation’s finest and most popular long-distance paths.

The creation of coastal paths in other parts of the country suggests the new path in North Yorkshire and Middlesbrough will bring clear benefits to the local economy. According to figures from the South West Coast Path report Unlocking Our Coastal Heritage, the National Trail is worth £400 million a year to the regional economy, equating to £630,000 per mile. According to counters on the previously opened South Bents to North Gare route, 10,000 people a year have enjoyed access to the coast and cliffs in a location which was previously inaccessible.

Cllr Carl Quartermain, cabinet member for jobs, skills and leisure at Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council said: ‘We are delighted to be supporting Natural England with the creation of its 2,700 mile-long coastal footpath, which is cutting through some of the most scenic areas of Redcar and Cleveland. Our borough has a stunning coastline and beautiful countryside, and we hope this new right of access will encourage more visitors to come and enjoy it.’ 

The England Coast Path #EnglandCoastPath gives walkers new rights of access to typical coastal land including foreshore, beaches, dunes and cliffs; including areas where everyone can rest, relax and admire the view. And, crucially, the path will now be able to ‘roll back’ as the cliffs erode or slips – enabling a replacement route to be put in place quickly if necessary, and so solving longstanding difficulties with maintaining a continuous route along the coast.

Read the article at UK Gov

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HLF on ‘Changing lives’: Read them on Tumblr

The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has awarded over £7.1billion to over 40,000 heritage projects across the UK and currently week by week they are telling stories about people whose lives have been changed for the better thanks to money raised by National Lottery players, and you now can read all the ‘Changing Lives’ stories in one place on Tumblr.

Read more…. 

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Last chance on IHBC Annual Gus Student Award 2016: Closes Sunday 31 July!

GASA_cert

IHBC Gus Astley Student Award closes on Sunday – have you entered yet?

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New Context out: Spreading the word on building types – Hong Kong shophouses, medieval settlements, Shaw’s flatlands and more…

Context145IHBC’s new issue of its celebrated membership journal, Context, is now out, and covers diverse topics from Hong Kong renaissance to Richard Norman Shaw and Energy Improvements, as well as a feature by the Urban Design Group’s Director, Robert Huxford, on the the lessons to be learned from Medieval Settlements. 

IHBC Director Seán O’Reilly said: ‘Context remains our most important contribution to learning and practice across the sector.  With the wide-ranging content in this issue, we can be sure we’re offering value to all our members, helping in practice, career progress and responding to our fast-changing working environments.’

‘To make this issue more accessible to all prospective users, we’ll be featuring individual articles both on our social media and on our new Conservation Wiki service, ensuring even wider reach and impact.’

Fiona Newton, current chair of the IHBC’s Editorial Board for Context, said: ‘This new issue of Context examines the origins of building types across the world from Hong Kong, China and Singapore to medieval British villages and the beginnings of flat dwelling in London.’ 

Context features in this issue include:

  • Barrister Charles Mynors looks at new uses for churches and church halls and argues that a parish that welcomes the local community into the church every day of the week is widening its ministry and offering a valuable service to the community.
  • Why study the origins of fields, villages and towns? Because 21st-century development is influenced by decisions that were taken perhaps 200 or 2,000 years ago, or even more. Settlement Research Group, Robert Huxford argues that good planning depends on understanding how those fields developed, and how they relate to historic settlements and highways.
  • Three articles in this issue highlight some distinctive buildings in China and Singapore. Ho-Yin Lee and Lynne D Distefano trace the development of the Hong Kong shophouse which for 100 years has been leaving a legacy of distinctive buildings from each period.
  • Structural engineer Brian Morton advised the Singapore Government on a new approach to restoring Singapore’s shophouses, which has since been incorporated into the regulation
  • Lee and Distefano also introduce the Chinese renaissance style of architecture that was introduced first to China in the 1920’s and to Hong Kong after 1949.
  • Paul Latham looks at Richard Norman Shaw’s hidden legacy which helped increase social acceptance of flat-dwelling in London.
  • Architect-planner Dennis Rodwell, Carsten Hermann from Historic Environment & Spanish researcher Aitziber Egusquiza Scotland describe progress on the European research project EFFESUS (the acronym for ‘Energy Efficiency for EU Historic Districts’ Sustainability’) which has investigated measures and tools to make significant improvements to the energy efficiency of European historic urban districts.
  • In this anniversary year Carol Fry writes in praise of Capability Brown

See Context online and for more about Context

See the new issue of Context online in full

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IHBC helps supports BLF’s 2016 conference -2-4 September, Liverpool – with free issues of IHBC’s ‘Earth and Clay’ Context too

Context_143The IHBC is a joint supporter of the forthcoming IHBC CPD-recognised Building Limes Forum (BLF) conference, on 2-4 September in Liverpool, also offering delegates free copies of the ‘Building with Earth and Clay issue of Context.

IHBC Director Seán O’Reilly said: ‘The annual BLF conference is a real high-point in the year for many of our members – even with the organisation led by one or more – as well as their colleagues, and as always this year it offers a splendid range of speakers, content and visits.’

‘We’re delighted to be able to continue our support for the conference this year, our third in a row I think.  It’s especially relevant as we have made available to delegates free issues of our members’ journal Context, and of course it’s ‘Building with Earth and Clay’ issue.’ 

BLF writes:

The 2016 Conference and Gathering of the Building Limes Forum will be held in Liverpool from Friday 2 to Sunday 4 September.  The venue will be the Liverpool Medical Institution, an unusual and interesting venue with an intimate lecture theatre. The theme for the conference is Lime and Aggregates and there will be an emphasis on hands-on demonstrations.

On Friday there will be lectures and visits to some of the major historical buildings in Liverpool to view conservation projects. Saturday will include practical demonstrations, further lectures with a practical bias and the option of further visits. Sunday morning will be devoted to members’ and delegates’ short presentations with further visits in the afternoon.

The Baker Memorial Lecture will be delivered on the Friday evening by Cliff Blundell. Cliff is a leader of the lime revival in Wales, specialising in the ‘re-liming’ of vernacular housing, and he is the author of Precious Inheritance and Sustainable Legacy.

The Building Limes Forum is grateful to Wienerberger, manufacturer of Keymer handmade roof tiles, for support of the conference and to St Astier, North West Lime Supplies, Mike Wye, and IHBC for support of receptions and dinners. The Forum is also grateful to The Rathbone Foundation for support of the 2016 bursaries. 

Visit the BLF conference website and see the programme

See Context online go to the Context archive

See the Building with Earth and Clay’ issue of Context online

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IHBC welcomes launch of HLF ‘Resilient Heritage’ programme

IHBC_AGM_2016The IHBC has welcomed the Heritage Lottery Fund’s (HLF) launch of its new funding programme ‘ Resilient Heritage’, which will support organisations as they build their capacity and undertake strategic change.

IHBC Chair James Caird said: ‘I’m delighted to be able to welcome this timely initiative.  It recognises just how important infrastructure support is to the heritage sector, not least the smaller specialist bodies such as the IHBC whose members continue to experience huge pressure on the ground as conservation planning, like planning itself, faces challenging times.’

‘With rapid change being the order of the day in all our operating environments, it is especially important that key bodies such as the HLF, as well as national heritage agencies and Trusts, recognise the value of support as well as partnership, as these organisations evolve to respond to current circumstances’.

HLF writes:

Resilient Heritage grants of £3,000-£250,000 can help you to strengthen your organisation, and build the capacity of your staff and volunteers to better manage heritage in the long term.

This programme is available to organisations in the UK who want to build their capacity or achieve strategic change to improve the management of heritage. Grants can fund activities to help you acquire new skills or knowledge, or new models of governance, leadership and business to put your organisation in a better position for the future. Organisations in the early stages of planning their activities may also apply.

Whether you’re facing challenges around income and fundraising, or preparing to take on new forms of investment, such as social investment, Resilient Heritage can support these processes.

Join the HLF on Thursday 4 August for a live chat in our Online Community where we’ll answer all the resilience application and assessment questions we can fit in an hour.

Read more….

 See the press release

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Somerset prison redevelopment blocked: LBC granted for GII* and GII, but transport a problem

Proposals to convert the GII* and GII listed former Shepton Mallet prison into a mix of flats and houses have been rejected by Mendip District Council, as members refused the main application because of concern over parking provision and traffic issues although Listed Building Consent (LBC) was granted.

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Call for nominations to AHRC Peer Review College: interests include heritage and archaeology

The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) is seeking nominations for new members to be appointed to its Peer Review College (PRC), with a deadline of 22 September.

AHRC writes:

Peer review lies at the heart of the AHRC’s operations, and we are fully committed to the principle of peer review for the assessment of proposals to our schemes and programmes. PRC members provide expert quality reviews of proposals within their areas of expertise, which inform the AHRC’s decision making processes. Members can also be called upon to sit on assessment or moderation panels and Strategic reviewers can be called upon for guidance. As well as making an important contribution to the AHRC’s peer review processes, the experience gained by membership of the College provides benefits to individuals, departments and higher education institutions.

This is an open call for membership to the AHRC Academic College, although nominees can also additionally apply for membership to any our college groups. The call is open to any organisation that has eligible staff (including organisations from the charitable, third and private sector) and who can supply eligible nominators. The nominations process will need to be centrally managed and supported by the institution (not the nominee), with all nominations being submitted by institutions rather than individual nominees…

Although this is an open recruitment call – meaning that anyone eligible to the call may be nominated – the AHRC is particularly interested in nominations within the following research areas:

  • Design
  • Modern Languages
  • Heritage
  • Performing Arts
  • Archaeology
  • Philosophy
  • Theology

We are also particularly interested in nominations bringing cross-cutting expertise in the form of the following:

  • Senior-level academics for nomination to our Strategic Reviewers Group
  • Expertise of an international development perspective

Please refer to the PRC Recruitment 2016 Call Document on the PRC News Webpage for further information and application guidance.

The deadline for nominations is 4pm on 22nd September 2016.

If successful, College members will be appointed for a term commencing 1 January 2017 and ending 31 December 2020.

Inductions will start in December 2016 and newly appointed members are encouraged to make every effort to attend the Induction to which they will be invited.

If you have any queries regarding the nomination process please do not hesitate to contact:

Russell Leake – Evidence and Analysis Manager

Email: r.leake@ahrc.ac.uk

Tel: 01793 416035

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Illegal demolition of Conservation Area housing at Tower Hamlets condemned by Mayor

London’s Tower Hamlets Council is considering taking legal action following the unauthorised demolition of ‘several’ unlisted properties in the Coldharbour conservation area.

Tower Hamlets Council writes:The council is considering taking legal action following the unprecedented unauthorised demolition of several unlisted properties in the Coldharbour conservation area.

The three properties in East Ferry Road were inspected two years ago by the council, after concerns were raised that they were structurally unsound.

However, detailed inspections by Tower Hamlets’ building control team concluded that the buildings were secure and that it was not necessary to serve a dangerous structure notice.

The council issued several reminders to the property owners explaining that it is a criminal offence to carry out demolition works in conservation areas without planning permission from the local authority.

The demolition has angered many locals and the council is now considering a range of remedial options – including taking legal proceedings.

John Biggs, mayor of Tower Hamlets, joined locals in condemning those responsible. He said ‘I am outraged by this unwarranted and illegal demolition.  The council is looking at its legal options, but in my view, the owners should be made to replace these properties like for like, brick by brick. This action is unprecedented in our borough. I can assure those who have been understandably distressed by this that the council takes protection of heritage assets seriously and we will thoroughly explore all of the options and seek to take the strongest legal remedy possible.’

A council spokesperson said: ‘Three properties at 2-6 East Ferry Road in Coldharbour conservation area have been demolished without planning permission. It is an offence to demolish buildings in conservation areas without permission and the council is currently considering initiating legal proceedings against the owners of the properties.’ 

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CLG Committee questions on government intentions over local plans

Clive Betts MP, chair of the Commons Communities and Local Government Committee has written to the new planning minister Gavin Barwell asking if the proposed neighbourhood planning and infrastructure bill will be published in draft.

The committee letter asks for ‘views’ on:

  • progress made by local authorities to prepare and adopt Local Plans;
  • the impact of the LPEG’s recommendations on local authority resources;
  • the LPEG’s recommendation that a statutory duty should be put on local authorities to prepare and maintain up to date Local Plans;
  • the ongoing role of Local Plans within planning policy, including the balance between localism and centralism and the role of Neighbourhood Plans;
  • the LPEG’s recommendation that where local authorities have not submitted a post­

National Planning Policy Framework Local Plan by March 2018, their existing relevant development plan policies for housing supply should be considered out of date;

  • the Duty to Cooperate;
  • the emphasis on housing in the LPEG’s report and recommendations;
  • the assessment of housing need;
  • public involvement in the Local Plan-making process;
  • the next steps for the LPEG’s recommendations.

The letter also asks the following questions:

  • The Local Plan-making process is currently complex and burdensome for local authorities. What measures will you put in place to simplify the process?
  • Is the Neighbourhood Planning system working effectively? Is there sufficient clarity about the roles of Local and Neighbourhood Plans, in particular where Neighbourhood Plans are adopted by areas for which no Local Plan is in place?
  • Will you use the Neighbourhood Planning and Infrastructure Bill announced in the Queen’s Speech to implement the LPEG’s recommendations? Will you clarify the intended timescales for the Bill’s introduction, in particular whether you intend to publish a draft Bill before it is formally introduced?
  • Do you intend to follow your predecessor’s intention to intervene in the production of Local Plans where local authorities do not have them in place by March 2017? If so, how many local authorities do you anticipate might need such intervention, and what form might it take?
  • In the longer term, if you do not accept and implement the LPEG’s recommendation for a statutory duty to prepare and maintain Local Plans, how will you ensure that local authorities keep their Local Plans up to date?
  • Will you amend the National Planning Policy Guidance to include a standard methodology for objectively assessing housing need?
  • The LPEG concluded on the basis of the evidence it received that the Duty to Cooperate is not working effectively. What measures will you put in place to ensure that local authorities cooperate effectively when preparing their Local Plans?

View the letter and read more on Planning Portal

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LGO issues further report on Durham ‘cowsheds’ complaint

The Local Government Ombudsman (LGO) has issued a further report into a planning complaint against Durham County Council in which residents complained about the way Teesdale District Council considered planning applications to build cowsheds on farmland.

The LGO writes:

The LGO issued its initial report on the complaint in February 2012, in which residents complained about the way Teesdale District Council considered planning applications to build cowsheds on farmland. The report was issued against Durham County Council as the successor authority and contained a number of recommendations for actions that the council needed to take

The further report puts on record the Ombudsman’s position since the original report was released.  It confirms that there are still outstanding actions that the council needs to take in response to issues raised in the original complaint. The council has been given three months to confirm what action it intends to take to comply with the outstanding recommendation.

Read more….

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Users for listed buildings at Stanley Mills sought

Charities and local groups who would like to get involved are being encouraged by Perth and Kinross Heritage Trust (PKHT) to come forward with suggestions for use as there is potentially over 2,000 square metres of floor space over the four buildings four buildings at Stanley Mills’ East Range.

PKHT writes:

PKHT is looking for new uses for the East Range at Stanley Mills. The four riverside buildings are the last part of this spectacular and historically important mill complex to be regenerated since the mills closed in 1989.  Please do get in touch if you’re looking for space for an existing or potential business, a charity or a local group and would like to be included in a regeneration strategy as a possible tenant, leaseholder or partner.

The Trust is working with Historic Environment Scotland, the current owners, to identify and explore viable new uses, as well as potential funding sources to bring the buildings back into productive use. Both organisations are committed to securing the future of the historic environment and aim to develop a scheme that will complement the existing visitor attraction and residential development, and benefit the local economy.

For more information see the Daily Record and read the story below

http://pkheritagetrust.tumblr.com/post/147048822888/trust-explores-new-uses-for-historic-mill

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Launch of new ‘My Community’ Rights and Heritage resource for England

The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has launched a new Community Rights and Heritage resource, ‘My Community’ which has been created in partnership with Heritage Lottery Fund, Historic England, Locality, The Architectural Heritage Fund, Civic Voice and Groundwork.

My Community writes:

Over the years protecting heritage buildings and assets has become increasingly important to people and the communities that value them. Heritage is in the very fabric of villages, towns and cities across England – it can be seen and felt in buildings, historic parks, museums, libraries, shops, pubs and much more.

Heritage is about what we value from our past – what we decide to keep, to conserve, to re-use, to share and to celebrate. It’s about memories, cultures and ways of life as well as places, buildings and objects. Community Rights make it easier to make sure that valued local heritage is protected, continues to exist, and benefits communities.

The new Community Rights and Heritage resource will help people and community groups find out how the Community Rights can help them to celebrate and protect their much-loved heritage assets.  

Launch of new Community Rights and Heritage resource

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