Victorian building wins a £2.4m boost

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WENTWORTH Castle’s crumbling conservatory is to be restored to it’s former glory thanks to a £2.4m Lottery grant.

The Grade II* listed conservatory is one of the last surviving Victorian ‘winter gardens’ in the country, sitting at the heart of Wentworth Castle Gardens and Stainborough Park, Barnsley.

It captured the nation’s interest when featured on the first series of BBC’s Restoration in 2002.

Now the World at Wentworth project will restore the conservatory and return it to its original splendour.

The refurbished potting shed will also become an interpretation gallery.

Visitors will benefit from a range of open days, activities and events encouraging them to learn more about the intriguing history behind this Victorian gem.

Training in rural crafts, garden maintenance and archaeological recording will also be offered to staff and volunteers.

John Edwards, Chairman of Wentworth Castle Gardens said: “We are absolutely thrilled that we are now well on the way to restoring this architectural gem.”

He added: “Thanks to the Heritage Lottery Fund for supporting this important project.”

Coun Steve Houghton, Leader of Barnsley MBC said: “This is excellent news for Wentworth Castle Gardens and for Barnsley.

“It shows the value of heritage to our local economy and when complete I hope it will attract people from all over the UK and perhaps even further afield.”