News Archive


Audience Enjoy THI Lecture Evening

 
 
  
 
 
 
THI LECTURE EVENING - 2 November 2017
 
A successful THI lecture evening attended by 40 people was held on Thursday 2 November 2017 in Tavistock Town Hall.  The programme included visual presentations from design professional Simon Crosbie of Le Page Architects on the completed restoration schemes at the Butchers' Hall and 1 Church Lane and architect Alison Bunning on the Pannier Market scheme that is due to commence in January 2018. In addition, Carl Heslop, Managing Director of Plymouth-based Obedair Ltd presented a contractor's perspective of the 1 Church Lane contract and Ben Dancer, a planning officer with the Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape World Heritage Site (WHS) team gave an overview of the significance of Tavistock and the surrounding area in relation to the WHS.
 
The attendees enjoyed delicious complimentary light refreshments provided by Janes Cakes, based in the Pannier Market, on arrival.
 
Feedback from people attending the event was extremely positive and it is envisaged that similar events will be staged in 2018.  Details will be posted on this website (www.tavistockthi.co.uk)  and that of the Town Council's (www.tavistock.gov.uk) as soon as possible.

 


Lead skills workshop at 1 Church Lane

A successful workshop demonstrating traditional leadwork skills was held at 1 Church Lane on Thursday 6 April 2017.  This was hosted by Obedair Ltd, the main contractor, and specialist sub-contractor Ian Wadland Roofing.  

It was attended by 15 people including the Mayor, Cllr Mandy Ewings and other local councillors, and representatives from Tavistock Heritage Consultative Forum, Tavistock

 and District Local History Society, local      construction businesses and the Town Council's Works Team.

The event started with a demonstration by Ian Wadland, who cut two pieces of Code 7 lead  and dressed them into a rolled flashing similar to the ones that have been used to cover the roof hips.  Attendees were then able to make their own rolled flashing under supervision.  

The event also provided an opportunity for attendees to view progress with the project to date, which is now well advanced, including repairs and restoration work to the roof and masonry pediment.  

 


Visitors observe progress with structural repairs at 1 Church Lane

A successful visitor morning was held at 1 Church Lane on Tuesday 21 February 2017 which provided a good opportunity for local stakeholders including representatives from the Town Council, Tavistock Heritage, Tavistock Heritage Festival and Tavistock and District Local History Society to observe progress with the THI renovation scheme whilst the roof structure is still exposed.
 
 
Good progress is being made with structural repairs to roof timbers and external window and door repairs/reinstatement.  Due to its poor condition the contractors have also had to take down the triangular masonry pediment on the south elevation and this will be rebuilt to match the original, including the decorative render mouldings.  The roof will be reinstated using felt, new softwood battens and natural slates.  The project is due to be completed in mid-April.
 
 
 
Carl Heslop, Managing Director of Obedair (main contractors) said 'Obedair are really proud of the work we are completing to restore Church Lane and committed to providing as much information as we can about the traditional materials and methods of construction being applied on this project.” 
 
Simon Crosbie, Director of Le Page Architects, Project Architects commented that “To be involved with another Townscape Heritage Initiative scheme project in Tavistock is a remarkable opportunity for us as a practice but also to be a part of a collective project team which is working tremendously hard towards what will be an amazing architectural transformation and restoration of this beautiful building’s envelope” 
 
The TTHI benefits from a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of nearly £1 million and is also supported financially by the Town Council, West Devon Borough Council, Devon County Council, the Greater Dartmoor LEAF and private property owners.
 
It should be noted that although the THI is able to make grants to private owners in the interest of saving and restoring some of the most significant historic buildings in Tavistock, there are strict ‘clawback’ conditions that prevent such owners making quick profits from public funding.  There is therefore a requirement for grant to be re-paid on a sliding scale if the owner disposes of his/her interest in the property within a period of 10 years following completion of the scheme and for that period the owners make a financial commitment to a management and maintenance programme to ensure that the restored buildings are kept in good condition.

 


External Restoration Starts on Historic Building in Church Lane

Restoration work has now commenced on 1 Church Lane, a small but distinguished Grade II Listed house of neo-Grecian style built c. 1825 and plausibly attributed to Foulston (i.e  John Foulston, 1772 – 1841), a well-known English architect who was undertaking other work in Tavistock at around that time for the Duke of Bedford and designed many iconic buildings in Plymouth and throughout the south west region.  1 Church Lane occupies a prominent location next to St Eustachius' Parish Church.  This will be the first privately owned building of historic and architectural merit to undergo conservation work as part of the Tavistock Townscape Heritage Initiative (TTHI), which benefits from a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of nearly £1 million.
 
 Alex Mettler, Chairman of Tavistock and District Local History Society and a member of the Tavistock Heritage partnership said that ‘ it was immensely satisfying to see that this wonderful Georgian period building is now being restored and would soon once more be a real asset within the Tavistock townscape’
 
The TTHI is a regeneration programme involving the restoration of public and privately-owned buildings of historic merit, the enhancement of specific public realm areas, and complementary activities to raise awareness of the town’s heritage and promote the use of traditional conservation skills.   It was established following eight years hard work by a partnership of local Councils, businesses and community groups, co-ordinated by Tavistock Heritage with the Town Council as the accountable body. The TTHI is also supported financially by Tavistock Town Council, West Devon Borough Council, Devon County Council, the Greater Dartmoor LEAF and private property owners.
 
The TTHI scheme for 1 Church Lane has been prepared by Le Page Architects, specialists in conservation schemes for historic buildings, who have recently supervised the repairs carried out on the Butchers’ Hall adjacent to the Pannier Market.  It will involve a mixture of architectural reinstatement and repairs to the external ‘envelope’ of the building to make it structurally sound and weatherproof.  
 
The main contractor for the project is Obedair, based in Plymouth and Carl Heslop, Managing Director commented that ‘Obedair are extremely proud to be involved with such a historic building so prominent in Tavistock. We look forward to restoring it to its former glory and working closely with everyone within the Tavistock Community.’’
 
The range of work includes structural repairs to roof timbers, repairs to parapet walls and gutters, removal of a modern chimney, renewing the slates, and refurbishment of rainwater gutters and downpipes.  The limited discharge of rainwater from the front parapet gutter, which has resulted in consequent structural damage to the front elevation, will be addressed by the provision of two additional internal rainwater pipes.   All windows and external doors are to be restored, including the reinstatement of windows where openings have been blocked up.  The existing lime mortar render will be sensitively cleaned off and defective areas hacked off and reinstated using a mix that closely matches the original as determined by laboratory analysis.  Any repointing work will also be carried out using appropriate lime render mortar.  
 
Simon Crosbie and Damon Pearce, Directors of Le Page Architects said “we are immensely proud to be again involved in a TTHI scheme that will restore and ultimately save this precious fabric of the town.  The building has lots of challenges due to its condition, but we are confident the highly experienced team will overcome them “ 
  
One of the principal aims of the TTHI is to bring vacant floor space back into productive use and following completion of the enveloping works it is the intention for the restored building to be let for commercial purposes.  It is anticipated that the restoration works will take approximately 20 weeks to be completed.
 
The Mayor, Councillor Mrs Mandy Ewings said:
 
‘I am delighted that restoration work is going to be carried out on a much loved and prominent building in the centre of Tavistock. For too long it has looked neglected and unkempt. The work which is going to be carried out will restore the outside of the building to its former glory.’
Martin Searle, THI Project Manager said:
‘‘I am delighted to see that work has now started on this handsome and iconic building which occupies a prominent location adjacent to St Eustachius’ Church and the well-used pedestrian thoroughfare linking Plymouth Road with the shops and other businesses in and around West Street, Market Street and King Street.’  

 


Historic Butchers' Hall Saved

An exemplar conservation roofing project at the historic Butchers’ Hall is currently nearing completion. The Hall, known to many in the town as the ‘Old Auction Rooms’, located next door to the Pannier Market, is a Grade II Listed building originally constructed in the 1860s for the Seventh Duke of Bedford as part of the planned redevelopment of Tavistock town centre. It is the first in a series of historically important buildings to undergo conservation work as part of the Tavistock Townscape Heritage Initiative (TTHI). This has been made possible by an award of nearly £1 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund and is the culmination of eight years hard work by a partnership of local Councils, businesses and community groups, co-ordinated by Tavistock Heritage with the Town Council as the accountable body.

The Mayor, Councillor Mrs Mandy Ewings said: ‘I am really excited to think that thanks to funding support for the Townscape Heritage Initiative, particularly from the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Butchers’ Hall has now been repaired and restored externally and will soon be available again for commercial uses that will enhance Tavistock’s status as a market town and help to attract more people to the town centre.’

John Taylor, Tavistock Heritage said: “These are the first buildings to benefit from the program toenhance the historic centre of Tavistock and stimulate economic regeneration of the town for the benefit of the whole community.”

Original plans from the 1860’s clearly show the Butchers’ Hall in the area of ‘new markets’. Indeed, many of the butchers’ tables remain intact as well as almost all of the original features and architecture. The restoration works, which have taken almost 6 months to complete, have been expertly delivered by the Town Council’s appointed contractors, A D Williams Ltd of Saltash under the supervision of project architect Simon Crosbie (Le Page Architects), an historic building and conservation specialist whose track record includes restoration of Grade 1 buildings within the Royal William Yard.

Simon said: “ we have been honoured to be a part of the incredible, dedicated team who have produced an amazing piece of conservation and restoration work to the Butchers Hall. There were many challenges faced during the project thrown up by the historic fabric, but they were overcome by all working closely together and always with a desire to provide the best for the building.”

The most iconic element of the Hall is its distinctive dog-legged roof structure with two lanterns featuring clerestory windows and louvres running the length of the building. This has been completely overhauled including structural repairs to roof timbers, restoration of the clerestory windows and louvres, renewing the slates and reinstating rainwater gutters and pipes. One of the most difficult challenges was to remove all of the original (extremely thin) glass panes from the clerestory windows and to re-use them in the same frames following renovation. This work was executed with great care and skill by the contractors, who managed to salvage approximately 95% of the glass. The timber louvres, which were originally open for ventilation, have now been glazed discreetly on the inside to improve energy efficiency. A traditional lead gutter has been created to improve the capacity of the central valley to cope with the higher rainfall levels currently experienced, but the original half-round gutter can still be seen from inside the Hall. All of the external joinery has re-painted in Brunswick green, a modern colour that matches the original paint as established by site and laboratory analysis.  Following removal of the scaffolding, there will still be some re-pointing to be completed using traditional methods and lime mortar as appropriate.

Steve Dashper, Site Manager, A D Williams Ltd (Main Contractors) said: ‘As a local man I have really enjoyed working on this conservation project and it gives me great pride now to see the Butchers’ Hall restored to its former glory, particularly the impressive roof structure.’

The next physical stage of the restoration project, to be undertaken under a separate contract, will involve internal adaptation and decorating works, including removal of timberwork partitions and design and installation of a new shop front/entrance at the Pannier Market end. It is envisaged that the building will be available for re-use by June 2017.

In parallel with this the Council will be recruiting a marketing manager early in the New Year to explore options for bringing the Hall’s 400 square metres of space back into commercial use. It is envisaged that it will be used for purposes complementary to those of the Pannier Market, possibly for themed markets, which will provide Tavistock with an enhanced market ‘offer’ that will help to attract more people to the town centre. The Pannier Market is the next ‘Critical’ building to be addressed under the Townscape Heritage Initiative.

Wayne Southall, Tavistock Town Council said: “The aim of this project was to bring this unique publically owned building back into economic use. The Butchers’ Hall will add around 400m2 of commercial retail space to the centre of Tavistock. Early in the New Year the Council will be looking at options for future uses that would be complementary to those of the Pannier Market, honour the heritage of the building as a market building, attract more residents and visitors and thereby help to regenerate the commercial heart of Tavistock”

Two successful skills workshops funded by the Townscape Heritage Initiative were held in the Butchers’ Hall on Tuesday 13 September 2016. The morning session featured restoration of the roof, clerestory windows and ventilation louvres hosted by A D Williams Ltd, including commentary tours with Simon Crosbie, Project Architect. The afternoon session covered lime skills (including hot lime), delivered by the Cornish Lime Company. The workshops were attended by representatives from local construction companies and Tavistock Heritage, the Town Council and the Greater Dartmoor LEAF. It is the intention to hold a further Craft Skills Day open to the public at a date to be confirmed in 2017.

 


Work starts on Butchers Hall

 
Historic hidden gem undergoes restoration this summer
 
 
 
This week work has started on the erection of scaffolding that will envelope the Butchers’ Hall for the next 6 months whilst restoration work is carried out.  
 
The Butchers’ Hall, known to many in the town as the Old Auction Rooms, located next door to the Pannier Market is undergoing repair and restoration as part of the Tavistock Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI).  The Grade 2 listed Butchers’ Hall is the first in a series of historically important buildings in Tavistock to undergo conservation work as part of the scheme.  
 
This impressive building was constructed for the Seventh Duke of Bedford in the 1860’s as part of the redevelopment of the centre of Tavistock that also included the Pannier Market, Town Hall, shops on Duke Street and the Police Station.  Original plans from the 1860’s clearly show the Butchers’ Hall in the area of ‘new ‘markets’.  Indeed, many of the butchers’ tables remain as well as almost all the original features and architecture.
 
The scaffolding marks the first phase in a restoration that will take an estimated six months to complete.  The contractors, A D William Ltd will be restoring the slate roof, repairing doors, windows and louvres, and re-pointing and stonework using traditional methods.
 
The project is being overseen by Simon Crosbie of Le Page Architects who has extensive experience of working on historically significant buildings including all the buildings in Royal William Yard, Plymouth.  Mr Crosbie said:
 
“This building in the heart of the town will be fully restored to the highest standards to ensure its reuse for the people of Tavistock will be in a space worthy of its history and architecture”
 
When works is complete it is envisaged that the Butchers’ Hall will be used as a market space.  Wayne Southall, Tavistock Town Council said:
 
“The aim of this project is to bring this unique publically owned building back into economic use.  The Butchers’ Hall will add around 400m2 of commercial retail space to the centre of Tavistock.  At the moment we are looking at uses that complement the Pannier Market and that will honour the building’s past as a market building.  The THI investment will ensure that this important building can be used to pull in residents and visitors and regenerate the commercial heart of Tavistock”  
 
The restoration is being funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, Greater Dartmoor LEAF and Tavistock Town Council.  
 
Sophie Price of Greater Dartmoor LEAF said:
 
“The Butchers’ Hall is one of the first projects in the country to have been approved in this new RDPE programme and should bring economic benefit and employment opportunities for Tavistock and surrounding rural areas”.
 
 
The Butchers’ Hall is the first building to undergo restoration work as part of the Tavistock Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI).  Tavistock THI is a partnership of local authorities, businesses and community organisations that aims to restore important historic buildings and public spaces in the town centre - a conservation area and part of the Cornwall and West Devon Mining Heritage Landscape UNESCO World Heritage Site.
 
John Taylor, Chairman of Tavistock Heritage said:
 
“I am absolutely delighted that works to restore the Butchers’ Hall are now starting as the first phase of our heritage-led THI regeneration programme for the town centre”.
 
For further information on the restoration of the Butchers’ Hall please contact Jacqui Orange, Works Administrator jacqui.orange@tavistock.gov.uk.
 
For further information about of Tavistock THI please visit www.tavistockthi.co.uk
 
 
 
This project is (part) funded by Greater Dartmoor LEAF with funds from the Rural Development Programme for England – Europe Investing in Rural Areas.
 
 
 
 
About the Heritage Lottery Fund
Thanks to National Lottery players, we invest money to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the heritage they care about - from the archaeology under our feet to the historic parks and buildings we love, from precious memories and collections to rare wildlife. www.hlf.org.uk @heritagelottery
 
Greater Dartmoor LEAF
This project is (part) funded by Greater Dartmoor LEAF with funds from the Rural Development Programme for England – Europe Investing in Rural Areas.
 
Further information
For further information, images and interviews please contact Jacqui Orange, Works Administrator on 01822 616134 or by email jacqui.orange@tavistock.gov.uk.

 


Heritage Competition open to children to 'Tell the Story of Tavistock'

 
 
THE 'STORY OF TAVISTOCK' COMPETITION
 
This Autumn a competition will be set for young people to tell the 'Story of Tavistock'. This will be open to children of primary to secondary school ages. 
 
There will be a £1000 worth of prizes..... and the winners to work with digital artists to translate their stories into digital media accessed by QR Codes around the town. 
 
More details will be available in Autumn 2015.
 

 


News index