Leominster High Street Heritage Action Zone Scheme
Leominster town centre is benefitting from the multi-million pound High Street Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ) Fund, which seeks to breathe new life into high streets that are rich in heritage and potential.
Leominster was one of a number of high streets in England which received a share of the £95 million government fund for heritage regeneration projects, led by Historic England working with local councils and the community. The Leominster scheme was awarded £1.3 million Historic England grant funding which is matched by £1.885 million funding from Herefordshire Council.
Herefordshire Council and Leominster Town Council are working in partnership with residents, businesses and community groups to deliver a range of projects, agreed with Historic England, which aim to renew and rejuvenate Leominster's High Street and Conservation Area.
Now in its final year, the projects in the Leominster HSHAZ Scheme, which were identified through public consultation and discussion with Historic England, include:
- Improvements to public spaces, with a focus on Corn Square
- Grants programme to renovate and restore key historic buildings
- A series of small-scale grant funded projects to repair and repaint shop fronts and shop signs
- The introduction of free public Wi-Fi and footfall counters in the town centre
- Web-based heritage app for promotion of Leominster's history, tourism and retail offerings
- Heritage trails around the town including a Children's Trail and a new Historic Shop Trail
- Conservation Area Appraisal to help to protect Leominster's architecture and ensure that new developments are in keeping with Leominster's unique townscape
- Conservation Management Plan to help inform and advise in respect of future planning applications and build on the monies already invested in Leominster
- Heritage building owners support and resources which seeks to encourage and empower local heritage building owners and occupiers to properly maintain and care for their buildings and
- The Light Up Leominster Christmas 2023 event
Public spaces improvements
Plans for improvement work to Leominster's High Street and Corn Square have taken a further step forward as the preferred design is agreed and the timeline is set for work to start in January 2024 and complete by summer 2024.
The High Street, Iron Cross, Victoria Street and Corn Street in Leominster will be enhanced with attractive surfacing, improved paving, wider pavements and raised tables at the major junctions making it easier for pedestrians. Corn Square will also be resurfaced in materials which will make the square more aesthetically pleasing and in keeping with its historic setting.
View the plans:
The proposed new timeline for these street works will see Corn Square and Leominster Town Centre remaining open throughout the Christmas 2023 trading period and minimise disruption to residents and businesses at one of the busiest times of the year for the town.
Original proposals had included the pedestrianisation of Corn Square to allow for events, and a reduction of traffic entering the High Street during the day. Due to feedback received during the consultation earlier this year, there will be no immediate changes to the current parking or traffic arrangements. We can confirm that no formal decision on this has been taken by Herefordshire Council and nor will it be until a full consultation with residents, businesses and local stakeholders has taken place. Further details of this consultation and how residents and businesses can get involved will be announced in due course.
Further information about our public spaces improvements is in the public realm frequently asked questions (FAQs).
Both grant schemes are now closed for expressions of interest. Thank you to everyone who has applied. We are delighted that so many people wanted to get involved in helping Leominster preserve its historical townscape and rebuilding its vibrancy.
Buildings which benefited from the initial grant scheme include the Rankin Club in Corn Square; Parry's Fruit & Veg on the High Street; 26 & 26A Broad Street. These buildings have all seen external structural and aesthetic improvements.
The Old Priory has also benefitted from surveys and feasibility studies to help review future uses for this most historic building.
Conservation Area Appraisal
Part two of the consultation on revised proposals to extend Leominster's existing historic market town centre Conservation Area is now closed. A full report will be available early 2024.
You can discover more about Leominster's history, buildings, art and people at Leominster Heart & Heritage.
For further information on projects in the Leominster HSHAZ Scheme, please email LeominsterHSHAZ@herefordshire.gov.uk