|Councillor Olwyn Barnett hands over the Grange Court keys to Bill Jackson, LARC chairman, after he paid the sum of £1. The ceremony was witnessed by Herefordshire councillors, members of the LARC board and Leominster town councillors.|
After more than eight years of planning, Herefordshire Council’s major revamp of Leominster’s Grange Court is over as the building is officially handed over to the LARC Development Trust for £1.
As part of the "Grange Court: building on the past for the future" project, Herefordshire Council has transferred the freehold of the completed building to LARC Development Trust (Leominster Area Regeneration Company).
A ceremony at which Bill Jackson, the LARC Chair paid the £1 to the chairman of Herefordshire Council, Councillor Olwyn Barnett was witnessed by Herefordshire councillors, members of the LARC Board and Leominster Town councillors. The event was also attended by officers from Herefordshire Council and LARC and the contractors who helped restore the Jacobean building and turn it into a bright modern, beautifully restored and rejuvenated building.
The scheme, made possible by grants from the Big Lottery Community Assets Programme, Advantage West Midlands Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) and the Social Investment Business Community Builders Fund has seen the historic former market house turned into a community, heritage and enterprise hub. As a venue for the recent Leominster Festival, it has already welcomed over 500 residents through its doors, and strong interest in its office space is already been shown by local entrepreneurs as well as long established charities.
Bill Jackson, chairman of LARC, said: “This outstanding project, which incorporates the iconic former market hall, has been refurbished to an excellent standard and is something for Leominster residents and businesses to be proud of.
"We’ve also already had visitors from further afield including the USA, Holland and France, eager to take a look at such a marvellous example of our local heritage, we are confident that this will be a draw for residents and become a major attraction for tourists to visit.”
Councillor Roger Phillips, cabinet member for enterprise and culture said: “This project has been a real testimony to partnership working and I’m delighted that we have reached the point where we are able to hand over Grange Court to LARC, as custodians on behalf of the Leominster community.
The services and space offered by LARC here will be vital for the local community and we are delighted to have been able to support the project and ensure its completion.”
Grange Court is open for business, including office rental, weddings, conferences, as well as a heritage visitor centre. To find out more please contact Dick Ellison, Grange Court Manager on 01568 737980 or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.grangecourt.org/.