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Grand Entrance for Revived Walled Garden
A handover ceremony was held on Tuesday 15th March to mark the completion of a contemporary entranceway which will link the walled garden to the Museum in the Park, Stroud.
Those involved in the project including Museum Friends, funders, Stroud district councillors, the design team, museum staff and contractors attended to see the entranceway unveiled.
Kevin Ward, museum development manager, said:
‘The new entranceway will provide an intriguing journey into the walled garden. The entranceway, which is a vital part of the whole museum experience, will lead visitors into the revived walled garden and also provide a creative space that will support learning. The entranceway is to our knowledge unlike any other in a walled garden’.
The modern design features limestone terrace and steps, benches with sweet-chestnut seating, bound gravel ramps with integral lighting throughout. The auditorium style entrance with gentle ramp forms a new route of discovery with points of rest and contemplation, promoting the same sense of discovery that visitors experience in the Museum, but this time in the ‘hidden’ Garden.
Once fully open, the project will give the original 2,000sqm walled garden a new lease of life, after lying derelict for over 20 years, providing a valuable open space to the public in the grounds of this popular museum. It will feature four ‘traditional’ quarters, divided by a cross section of paths with a dipping pond at the centre, an area for planting and events and an orchard/wild meadow quarter. Schools have already been making extensive use with of the museum’s new learning pavilion which opened in 2015.
Professor Stephen Owen, Chair of the Gloucestershire Environmental Trust (GET), which provided £30,000 of funding for the entranceway, expressed his delight in reaching this point.
He thanked everyone who has supported and worked on the project, and said:
‘The pavilion which was funded by Gloucestershire Environmental Trust and Stroud District Council provides a very fitting venue for the museum’s learning programme. The entranceway enhances the whole experience for all visitors whether leading them into the garden for learning and enjoyment, or as part of their journey to the pavilion’.
Professor Owen and Cllr Gary Powell, vice-chair of Stroud District Council, unfurled a Museum in the Park flag, to reveal a plaque acknowledging the support of key funders. In addition to Gloucestershire Environmental Trust and Stroud District Council, funding has also come from the Garfield Weston Foundation, David Thomas Charitable Trust, Summerfield Trust, and Friends of the Museum through donations from hundreds of members of the public.
Cllr Powell said: ‘Along with other funders, Stroud District Council is pleased to be supporting this project. The dedication of the Friends and museum team to completing this project will benefit the local community and the thousands of visitors to the museum. The new entranceway is beautifully designed and befitting of the location.’
The Friends of the Museum are continuing to seek the final amount of funding to complete the planting and other soft landscaping before the walled garden is fully opened to visitors.
Mr Ward added:
“The walled garden will open to the public once the planting and other landscaping is complete. We want everyone to enjoy their journey into the revived garden, and to be inspired and enjoy their time with us. In the meantime, the garden will be used for some groups who book the museum’s educational programmes.”
For more information on the project and how to support it, visit http://www.museuminthepark.org.uk/walled-garden-project/
Photograph by Steve Marshfield. Shows funders, Members, Friends Committee, Contractors, Museum Trustees, Museum staff and volunteers in the new Entranceway.
The Gloucestershire Environmental Trust provides grants from funds generated by the Landfill Communities Fund provided by Cory Environmental (Gloucestershire) Ltd, which owns and manages the waste management operations in Gloucester, Cheltenham and Cirencester. More information on how to apply for Gloucestershire Environmental Trust funding can be found at www.glos-environment-trust.co.uk
The Friends of the Museum (Friends of Stroud District (Cowle) Museum) is a charitable trust which offers support and financial assistance to Museum in the Park. See http://www.museuminthepark.org.uk/museumfriends/
The Summerfield Charitable Trust was established in 1989, it has paid more than £7 million in grants to good causes in Gloucestershire benefiting the arts, the natural heritage and environment, community projects, education, recreation and sport, and the vulnerable and disadvantaged. http://www.summerfield.org.uk/
The Garfield Weston Foundation has been donating money to charitable causes across the UK for over half a century. On average, approximately 1,500 charities across the UK benefit each year from grants made by the Foundation ranging from the smallest community and volunteer projects through to large national organisations. http://www.garfieldweston.org/
Other members of the entranceway design team include:
- Richard Jackson Ltd
- Broadhursts Chartered Quantity Surveyors
- Stroud District Council Building Control
- Phillex Electrical Solutions
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