Guildhall project gets cash boost

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A PROJECT to rejuvenate England’s oldest complete civic building, has received a cash boost.

The Bury St Edmunds Heritage Trust is looking to transform the Guildhall into a central hub for the community, welcoming up to £100,000 visitors a year. In the long term the scheme is likely to cost about £750,000.

To get the scheme under way the trust is looking to create a £15,000 development plan which, thanks to a £2,000 donation from Havebury Housing Partnership’s Community Investment Fund, can now go ahead.

The 13th century building contains the only complete Royal Observer Corps Operation Centre to survive from the Second World War and is currently used for Theatre Royal rehearsals.

The development plan will help the trust identify funding opportunities and involve the community in the project.

Martin Lightfoot, secretary of the Bury Heritage Trust, said: “Thanks’s to the donation from Havebury, we can now start to move forward and shape the whole of the future development.

“We have received enthusiastic support from the public and are looking forward to opening this historic building for their enjoyment.”