Works continued thanks to the Culture Recovery Fund

Thanks to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), the Culture Recovery Fund secured the future of Britain’s museums, heritage sites and other precious places with emergency grants and loans. Awarded via the Major Works Programme, a key strand of the Heritage Stimulus Fund administered by Historic England, two transformative grants unlocked vital projects previously put on hold because of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Watch and read about these projects below.

Schedule Ancient Monument repair at Crownhill Fort

Thanks to the grant, Crownhill Fort manager Ed Donohue has been able to fix water ingress at Crownhill Fort's gatehouse, plus complete a project with Orchard Stonemasons to repoint walls at the entrance, all allowing safe access to the Victorian fort to continue.

In addition, Le Page Architects, based in Plymouth, resumed work to repair fabric of the Royal Artillery Store. Prior to Coronavirus, Phase 1 of these works had created a structurally sound watertight shell. Thanks to the grant, Phase 2 has reinstated surface water drainage, renewed the floor, removed unsympathetic paint from the internal historic walls and we've inspected the steel beams supporting the roof. 

Woodspring Priory

In autumn 2020 Landmark received a grant from the first round of the Culture Recovery Fund. That grant enabled, among other projects, masonry repairs to sections of Cloister and boundary wall at the Grade I-listed Woodspring Priory. Further funds enabled works to continue and to extend to the Chapter House, plus repairs to the Mounting Block at the Gatehouse entrance.

Situated within a Scheduled Ancient Monument, much of Woodspring's extensive site is constructed of Lias stone which, once it loses its protective face, becomes particularly vulnerable to erosion. The works will consolidate, stabilise and soft cap the walls, rebuilding where necessary. Landmark's senior surveyor Richard Burton is working with Michael Vaughan and John Beauchamp of Somerset-based Benjamin and Beauchamp Architects, who recently worked on our restoration of Winsford Cottage Hospital, and local archaeologist Vince Russett to oversee the repairs. 

We were delighted that Orchard Stonemasons won fresh the competitive tendering process, and as of January 2022 continue to work with us on this project. Pictured left they are repairing the historic walls around the Cloister, garden walls and field boundaries.

Silverton Park Stables

At the monumental Silverton Park Stables we will be undertaking a programme of brickwork and masonry repairs. Works will include the stabilisation, rebuilding and capping of approximately 120 meters of boundary wall, plus the replacement of eroded brick and stone together with repointing across the stable block north elevation.  

Landmark's surveyor for the south west Mark Cox is leading the project, working together with John Alexander of Jonathan Rhind Architects based in Barnstaple. Specialist conservation contractors Orchard Stonemasons, who are themselves based in Silverton.

Cawood Castle

A gatehouse and small domestic wing are all that remain - above ground - of the once-sizeable Cawood Castle principal palace of the Archbishops of York from the 13th until mid-17th centuries. With nationally important archaeology, the site is a Scheduled Ancient Monument.

Thanks to the funding, we are undertaking a range of works including significant roofing and fabric repairs across the building, in addition to a series of digital measure plus condition surveys, specialist conservation cleaning works. Landmark's surveyor for the north Stuart Leavy is leading the project, working with Andrew Wiles of Wiles Maguire Architects in York - who recently worked at Brinkburn Mill - and consultant ecologist Madeline Holloway.

Delabole slate reroofing

At Lower Porthmeor near Zennor, a transformative project to structurally stabilise, repair and reroof the three linked barns in Delabole slate has been underway. We have removed failing cement sheet roofing and undertaken masonry repairs, installing new timber rafters and purlins in the traditional style. We're reroofing with a traditional Cornish scantle slate covering, wet-laid using lime mortar and local Delabole slates.

Given the complexity of the work and coastal location, a team of highly local specialists have been involved, including Looe-based quantity surveyor Tim Deakin from Peegleys, structural engineer Kathy Gee from James Lockyer Associates in Liskeard, archaeologist Eric Berry from Redruth, Truro-based Cornwall Environmental Consultants and Landmark’s surveyor for the south-west Mark Cox. Principle contractor Paul Carter, of Paul Carter Construction and Renovation Services Ltd, has expert knowledge of the distinct West Penwith vernacular architecture and is himself based in Treen. Paul's team include Tony Farmer, Mark Drew and Dale Jackson, all local.

Pictured are Paul (left) and Kathy (right) deep in conversation.

Traditional lime at Brinkburn Mill

In March 2020 Andrew Wiles of Wiles Maguire Architects, a conservation-accredited architect in Yorkshire, was working on the consolidation of historic ruins beside Brinkburn Mill but had to stop suddenly with lockdown.

Now thanks to the grant, Alnwick-based Brendon Teasdale of Teasdale Masonry has carried out the specialist work, which involved the use of hot lime mortars. Students from New Durham Collage visited for several training days, covering a range of topics including the difference between Hydraulic and Non-Hydraulic binders, the lime cycle, plus the mixing and preparation of Hot Limes, gauged and non-gauged mortars. During the visits, students were also able to undertake practical hands-on pointing work.


Stabilising the curtain wall at Stogursey Castle

Orchard Stonemasons have completed work on the Grade II*- listed curtain wall at Stogursey Castle in Somerset.

This project – which was due to take place in 2020 - is the latest phase in our long-term stabilisation work to the extremely friable local lias stone, traditional preventative maintenance to slow down the decay process.

Local businesses on Lundy

The grant supported vital repairs to several of Lundy’s precious buildings. At the Old Light, conservation craftspeople Charlie Smith and Rachel Thompson, from the aptly named Old Light Building Conservation, have completed repairs to the cantilevered staircase within the tower, including replacing all the lower sections of the rusted spindles that have long been damaging the granite steps. Mike and Ben from family-run business Somerset Forge were heavily involved with welding in and shaping the new spindle sections.

Rachel and Charlie have also repointed the weathered gable of the former Lighthouse Keeper's accommodation block with lime mortar and undertaken repointing works around Millcombe House, all to help keep damp from the Atlantic gales at bay.

These vital works will now allow safer access to the lighthouse for Lundy visitors and keep the weather out for guests in the popular accommodation.

Rachel and Charlie said, ‘Thank you Culture Recovery Fund! We are so happy that this much-needed work is able to continue. Not only for the sake of this magnificent building but also for the help it will give our fledgeling business to stay afloat, following the devastating impact that the pandemic has had upon the heritage organisations who employ us.'

Halting rainwater damage at Methwold

Kings Lynn based D&E Builders have installed new cast-iron gutters and downpipes at Methwold Old Vicarage, reinstating ironwork pictured in newly discovered photographs from the 1970s. The work will prevent internal water ingress damage at the delightful, Grade-I listed vicarage. 

Precious fabric at Shute Gatehouse

In spring 2020, work was about to start on much-needed external masonry repairs at Shute Gatehouse in Devon.

Local firm Orchard Stonemasons, based nearby and led by Mike Orchard, have now completed work to repoint stretches of the main structure, turret rooms and connecting walls in traditional lime mortar. This preventative maintenance work will ensure the structure remains weather tight.