Alston Moor Partnership received grant funding of £1.3 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) in 2015 for the Alston Townscape Heritage scheme (THS). The total project is expected to cost in the region of £1.7m with funding also provided by Eden District Council, Alston Moor Parish Council, and individual property owner contributions.
The scheme aims to improve a number of architecturally important properties on Front Street & Market Street within Alston’s conservation area. The project also included various heritage events and some more specific skills and training opportunities.
The funding allows the improvement and regeneration of a number of historic town centre properties, with works such as reinstating traditional windows and shopfronts. It also improves the look and user-friendliness of the ‘streetscape’ in the town centre resulting in a more attractive environment for people to work, live in and to visit. A ‘Gateway’ public realm scheme at Townfoot aims to help to give a much-needed boost to the local economy and increase business confidence, bringing more visitors into the town as well as encouraging residents to make more use of their local shops and town centre.
The Heritage Lottery Fund’s Townscape Heritage scheme helps communities to improve the built historic environment of conservation areas, with the aim of boosting economic regeneration for the benefit of local residents, workers and visitors.
It goes beyond just the bricks and mortar of buildings; it improves how places look and feel, encouraging business start-ups and attracting more visitors.
Heritage will be: - better managed & in better condition
People will have: - developed skills i.e. local contractors learn new skills - opportunities to learn about heritage through the activities programme
Communities: - environmental impacts will be reduced - a wider range of people will have engaged with heritage
Public realm – Townfoot
The final part of the Scheme is to undertake a purposeful piece of work in the public realm, the parts of the town open to all. After careful consideration of the areas that might be suitable, and having been unable to pursue proposals to improve the Potato Market due to legal issues, it has been decided to do something at Townfoot to provide a welcome, with the intention of drawing visitors into the town and creating a space for residents to appreciate and enjoy.
What is the idea?
The purpose of this consultation is to ask for your view on the ‘message’ you think should be conveyed. What quickly-understood image or idea might best convey what Alston is all about and immediately draw visitors up to the shops, cafés, pubs and life of the town? The final creation has to be something eye-catching, quickly understood, and make visitors want to walk or drive up into the centre of the town – and for local people to feel proud of.
When people come to Alston, what first impressions do you want them to have, what lasting image do you want them to take back with them?
This is the first of two consultations. You will have another opportunity later to view alternative designs for the ideas you select in the survey
We have appointed a firm of landscape architects, who will use the responses and analysis of the first consultation to prepare up to three design proposals. There will be a further public consultation on these so we can finalise a design by early May. Our landscape architects will then take the project through a planning application, recruiting contractors, and managing the works. The timescale is tight, as our Townscape Heritage scheme winds up at the end of this year.
Please look out for the next consultation, and contact us - if you have any queries.
The Townscape Heritage Scheme Team.
The red line denotes the area that applies for this consultation
The first consultation on the Townfoot site ended last month.
We've analysed the responses and you can view our report below.
We've also engaged an independent advisor to look at the responses and her report is also available.
Finally, we thought it would be useful to publish all the comments that people gave in their responses.
As you'll see these are many and varied. Some refer to things such as car-parking or other issues which can't be part of the 'heritage' remit. However other organisations may be able to use these comments to support the development of projects of their own.