Celebrating five years of Gorebridge heritage regeneration
A £2 million pound project to repair and restore historic buildings in Gorebridge has been successfully completed after five years.
Buildings restored in historic town centre
The Gorebridge Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme is a partnership involving Midlothian Council, Gorebridge Community Development Trust and Historic Environment Scotland. Thanks to grant funding provided by the project to local property owners, 26 buildings have been restored in the historic town centre, along with improvements to public areas around Hunter Square.
Traditional building skills
The regeneration scheme has also encouraged contractors, building owners, and apprentices to take part in traditional construction skills training, delivered in partnership with Edinburgh College. 56 trainees completed the courses and 30 local children took part in schools awareness courses.
Unique history and heritage
A number of local community engagement projects were also held to increase awareness and appreciation of Gorebridge’s unique history and heritage.
To celebrate the scheme’s completion, and to say thanks to everyone who has helped make it a success, a special celebration is planned for the evening of Wednesday 9 May at the Gorebridge Community Development Trust office. Local people are invited to attend the event, at 58 Main Street, from 5.15 to 7.30pm, to hear about the project’s achievements and view an exhibition and film on the regeneration work.
Success of the Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme
Representatives from Historic Environment Scotland (HES) will attend to congratulate the Gorebridge community and report on the success of the Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme (CARS), which has awarded nearly £40 million to 61 different schemes across Scotland since 2007. HES will also preview a film on the Gorebridge CARS to show how the partnership approach got the community involved and improved local knowledge of the area.
Engaging with the local community
Midlothian Council’s communities spokesperson, Councillor Russell Imrie, thanked everyone who has helped make the heritage regeneration project a success.
“By enthusiastically engaging with the local community, the project partners have delivered significant improvements to properties and to the streetscape in the historic town centre,” said Councillor Imrie. “They have also successfully delivered a training plan to improve skills and awareness in traditional construction skills, and have increased appreciation of the town’s fascinating history and heritage.”
Further improvement work
As a result of the work already carried out in Gorebridge, additional grant funding has been sought for further improvement work. The ‘Gorebridge Connected’ masterplan has been approved for grant funding by the Borders Railway Blueprint fund and includes proposals for more improvements at Hunter Square. There are also plans for a heritage trail to connect Hunter Square and the Main Street with the station and other sites of interest, such as Newbyres Castle and the Stobs Mill Gunpowder Works site.
The repair and restoration of Gorebridge Station for community use is also planned, with the award of LEADER and Railway Heritage grant funding for the project.