There’s great news as a major heritage project draws down more than £800,000 from a nationwide fund.

The Brymbo Heritage Trust’s first-round application for funds to progress its massive project, making use of Brymbo’s amazing historical features in the regeneration of, was approved by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) earlier this month.

We’ve already detailed the Heritage Trust on the blog before – including recent support given to it by Wrexham Council by way of a £170,000 loan.

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The Trust’s aim is to see the remaining industrial buildings and the nearby Brymbo Fossil Forest restored and excavated as a visitor attraction, learning centre and vibrant local space known as Brymbo Heritage Area.

The Heritage Lottery Fund’s Board of Trustees considered the Trust’s application last month, and chose to support it in the face of stiff competition from across the UK.

The award will allow the Trust to grow and to bring in the full range of design, engineering and legal professionals it needs to put together fully costed proposals, before a second stage application in late 2019.

If that application proves successful the building work will get underway in 2020 with the facilities opening a year later.

The Trust has been set up by members of Brymbo Heritage Group to take the project forward, and it gained charitable status in August this year. The Trust has already been awarded nearly £2m by another of the National Lottery’s arms – the BIG Lottery – to develop a series of ex-industrial landscapes in and around Brymbo, and has just submitted a bid for £1.1m to progress the refurbishment of its steelworks Machine Shop building next year.

Cllr Hugh Jones, Lead Member for Communities, Partnerships, Public Protection and Community Safety, said: “This is excellent news, and congratulations are certainly due to Brymbo Heritage for having achieved this.

“The historical and archaeological importance of the assets up at Brymbo really can’t be overestimated. The fossil forest alone is of global significance – and that’s notwithstanding the obvious signs of the area’s industrial heritage, including Brymbo Steelworks.

“The opportunities posed by regeneration through heritage are very promising, and I hope this marks just the start of what will prove to be a very successful and rewarding project for the Brymbo area.”

Cllr Paul Rogers, Lead Member for Brymbo, said: “This is absolutely fantastic news –everyone at the Heritage Project has put in a lot of hard work on this over the past few years.

“This isn’t just something that’s started up recently and a lot of work went into preparing this bid to ensure its success – and all those at the project deserve to be congratulated for the effort they’ve put in.

“I’m sure this project will be a huge benefit to Brymbo.”

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