Exciting proposals to bring new life to Herne Bay’s historic seafront clocktower have received initial financial backing from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
The city council submitted a phase one funding bid to the HLF in autumn 2012 and has just been awarded a development grant of £16,100. This allows further detailed planning work to take place ahead of a phase two bid for the full grant of £232,200 in November. The council is also contributing £100,000 to the project.
The proposals would see major refurbishment of the clocktower together with educational activities. Modern LED lighting would be installed, along with four webcams on the top of the clocktower and one inside showing the workings, with the pictures relayed live to a website. Displays relating to the history of the clocktower would also be created in a shop on the seafront as a visitor attraction and resource for schools.
Other activities include publishing an updated version of a book about the clocktower by local historian Mike Bundock and the development of culture and heritage walks around the town in partnership with Herne Bay Improvement Trust.
Over the next few months, firm plans for the project will be put together, which will involve extensive public participation. Demonstrating community support is key to securing phase two funding from the HLF.
The council’s Herne Bay Regeneration Manager, Patrick Rynne, said:
“The clocktower is a magnificent building and a focal point on the seafront, but its condition has deteriorated over the last few years. This project gives us the chance to restore it to its former glory and create a wonderful attraction for residents and visitors. We hope local people will want to join us on this journey and look forward to working with the community as we put the next part of the bid together. And we are naturally grateful for the support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, which is allowing us to develop this exciting project.”
A first-round pass means a project meets HLF criteria for funding and HLF believes the project has potential to deliver high quality benefits and value for Lottery money. The council’s application was in competition with other supportable projects, so a first-round pass is an endorsement of outline proposals.
Using money raised through the National Lottery, the HLF sustains and transforms a wide range of heritage for present and future generations to take part in, learn from and enjoy.
From museums, parks and historic places to archaeology, natural environments and cultural traditions, the HLF invests in every part of the country’s diverse heritage. The HLF has supported more than £30,000 projects, allocating £4.7 billion across the UK. For more information, visit www.hlf.org.uk .
CCC 23rd Apr 2013
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