BRYMBO HERITAGE TRUST
We're the team leading the vision for the conservation, restoration and celebration of Brymbo's rich natural, industrial and social history, and for helping the community make the most of the spaces and facilities it has on its doorstep. Read away, ask us a question, or step forward and join us in making the magic happen.
12th May - We had some disappointing news this week for the Stori Brymbo project. We missed out on some funding that we were seeking.
You will remember that we had reached a point back in March 2020 of having a £6.1m project with £6.1m of funding secured to make it happen. But we then experienced 3 years of delays.
A few months ago we announced the project's resumption, with the two Lottery funders releasing funds to allow us to bring the design team back on board to prepare for the project's anticipated full start in early 2024.
That full start – when the builders take over for a couple of years - relies on us being able to return to a 'balanced budget', and our £6.1m project is now forecast to cost £8m. We have therefore been busy trying to secure additional funding to make up the difference.
We had been hopeful of securing most of the shortfall from a single source - the UK Government's Shared Prosperity Fund - administered by local authorities. On Tuesday, Wrexham Council's Executive Board approved a range of applications to progress to the next stage, but sadly ours wasn't one of them.
This is undoubtedly a set-back for us, but one which we're confident we can find a way through. We will now work with the various specialists, stakeholders and funders to re-group and consider how best to take the vision for Brymbo Heritage Area forward together.
Meanwhile, we’re continuing to deliver our various ‘Roots to Shoots’ landscape projects, and are making great progress in building our volunteer team up to help us prepare for bigger things to come. Our next open day will take place on Sunday 9th July.
We wish all those who got the result they wanted every success in delivering positive impacts in Wrexham. We look forward to joining you in making Brymbo, our City and County Borough ever more vibrant places and communities.
News - April 2023
TRUSTEE RECRUITMENT - we are looking for four more trustees to join us.
Brymbo Heritage Trust is the not for profit organisation responsible for bringing the vision for Brymbo’s Heritage to life. We have been awarded funding of more than £8m for two key projects – Stori Brymbo, covering the Fossil Forest and the built remains of the iron and steelworks; and Roots to Shoots, covering the wider historical landscapes in an around Brymbo.
These projects are funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund and The National Lottery Community Fund, with several other public sector funders and charitable trusts providing matched funding.
We are looking for 4 further trustees to join our highly motivated and effective Board. Candidates should have a broad range of experience and skills and be passionate about community heritage. In particular, applicants with knowledge of project delivery, fundraising, business development and marketing and learning & interpretation would be welcomed.
The role of trustee is voluntary, and we are seeking individuals who can commit to attend monthly Board meetings as well as up to four sub-committee meetings a month. We value a diversity of backgrounds and experience and would be happy to discuss the commitment with you.
This is a fantastic project led by people who care deeply about what they do. If you believe you have the skills, qualities and time we're seeking, we very much look forward to hearing from you.
Our governing document, the trustee role description and application form can all be downloaded here, and feel free to get in touch to discuss the opportunity informally by email on email@example.com or by phone on 0800 772 0981.
Closing date: 12 noon Monday 7th August 2023.
On 18th January 2023 we were pleased to be able to write to our volunteers to tell them about a long-awaited development:
'We have some further good news about the land deal underpinning the heritage project.
As you know many of our activities have been paused since the Autumn of 2019 while we took time - far longer than hoped - to renegotiate a legal agreement to lease the remains of the works, the fossil forest and the park above Lodge.
We agreed 'heads of terms' for a 25-year lease back on 4th April last year, and this has led to the detailing of the lease itself along with a covering legal contract called the 'agreement for lease'. We signed that document on Friday last week, bringing us a step closer to getting the project underway.
If you've ever bought a house, this is the commercial equivalent of 'exchanging contracts', with a 'completion date' for moving in a little farther down the line. How much farther depends on lots of factors, mostly outside of our control, to do with inflation impacts, additional fundraising, and planning consents. We're currently modelling the project's budget on a start date in either September this year or next January.
Over the coming weeks there will be lots of visible concerted efforts to get us as close to a September start as possible to minimise the further cost impacts of inflation.
As part of those efforts we're asking the two National Lottery funders to advance us around 8% of the funding they committed to us back in 2018 and 2020 (which has been held in Cardiff waiting for us to be ready) to re-engage the architects to start the preparation of tender packs for the construction and restoration work. This way, when we do eventually 'move in' we can go straight out to tender, appoint contractors and get the work underway.
Meanwhile, reaching the 'exchange' point also means we are being granted a new licence to do some works on-site ahead of the lease starting. This will replace the one for the fossil forest that expired in July 2021, and is much wider in scope.
It will allow us to do fencing and bridge repairs in the park area, conduct further surveys in the old works, empty the Machine Shop and Cider mill, and transfer their contents and activities to shipping containers. Work cataloguing and analysing fossil specimens can restart too, and there's lots of tidying up to do!
Consequently, we'll be looking to resume volunteering in a big way. We will also be looking at running a small number of public 'open day'-style events this year - no Brymbo Rocks yet though!
As we start this next chapter we'll be growing our board of trustees to help us prepare to deliver the largest community-led heritage project North Wales has ever seen, and we'll start the call for expressions of interest very soon.
Thanks again for your commitment and faith. We're getting there!'
Wish best wishes, and on behalf of the trustees and staff.'