Ipswich: £2.8million Lottery Money For Holywells Park

2 July 2013, 00:01 | Updated: 2 July 2013, 06:15

Ipswich Borough Council has received a grant of £2.8 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund(HLF) and Big Lottery Fund (BIG) for the Holywells “Parks For People” restoration project.

The Borough Council submitted the “Parks For People” bid to regenerate what they describe as one of the town’s 'hidden gems' and will now begin work to conserve and enhance the park’s  heritage as well as provide more attractions for visitors.
The HLF grant will be added to by funding from the Friends of Holywells Park and by the Borough Council.

Among the improvements made possible by the HLF/BIG grant are:

  •      A visitor centre in the Stable Block
  •      The restoration of the Orangery
  •      An open-air theatre space
  •      New toilets
  •      A fitness trail
  •      Better access
  •      An outdoor classroom

The funding will also enable a series of events and activities to take place within the park that will encourage its increased use by wider and more diverse audience.
The project will bring to life the park, formerly the home of the Cobbold family, Ipswich’s famed brewing dynasty, that is close to the Waterfront and university and to a large part of Ipswich.
Councillor Bryony Rudkin, Ipswich Borough Council’s Culture & Leisure portfolio-holder, said: "This is great news for Ipswich and for Holywells Park. We asked local people what they wanted to see improved and our bid reflected their views. We will now be able to undertake this important refurbishment to attract more visitors to one of Suffolk's finest parks and to ensure that people who come here have more to see and more to do. I am grateful to the Heritage Lottery Fund and Big Lottery Fund for giving us this award and also want to thank everyone who worked on our bid – at the Council, the Friends of Holywells Park and the local community."

Robyn Llewellyn, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund for the East of England said: “We’re delighted to be able to provide this much needed support for Hollywells Park, particularly in the current economic climate when it could not be more needed. Parks are an incredibly important amenity for allof us and add greatly to our quality of life, knitting communities together and acting as a green lung for our towns and cities. Hollywells Park in Ipswich is hugely important to the community it serves and now, with HLF/BIG funding we can help to secure its future.”

Robin Gape, Chair of the Friends of Holywells Park, added: “We are very much looking forward to the changes, particularly the revival of the Orangery and the refurbishment of the Stable Block. We know play area users will welcome the installation of a toilet block, while the Visitor Centre will be an asset, as will the Changing Places facility. Meanwhile, we want to see lots of people coming to the park this year, when the changes get under way next year and in the years following.”