City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Three City Properties To Gain £2,145,000 Heritage Grants

By edg - Posted on 07 February 2012

Greyfriars Kirk

Greyfriars Kirkyard (famous resting place of Greyfriars Bobby), a hidden Victorian shopfront on Nicolson Street, and a Victorian communal courtyard in Dean Village are to benefit from a Historic Scotland restoration grant of £2,145,000.  The City Heritage Trust grants will be dispersed over the next three years to safeguard and enhance conservation areas, the historic environment and sense of place.

Scotland’s six cities will receive £7.69m in total with the City Heritage Trust grants.

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs said the outlay will make Scottish cities "better places to live, work and invest."

“Managing our historic environment creatively also contributes to sustainable economic growth by growing Scotland’s construction industry and increasing the availability and quality of traditional skills and materials. Using new skills and sustainable materials in the adaptation of existing buildings will also help support the historic environment’s transition to a low carbon economy," said Hyslop.

She added: “This investment builds on our Agenda for Cities and £7 million Cities Investment Fund, which has been launched to build the momentum to make sure our cities and their regions make the fullest possible contribution to sustained economic recovery – stimulating economic recovery and job creation.”

Adam Wilkinson, Director of Edinburgh World Heritage said: “We are highly encouraged by this vote of confidence by the Scottish Government and Historic Scotland in the work of EWH and our fellow City Heritage Trusts. This will enable us to support the Scottish Government’s emphasis on the importance of “place”, conserving the remarkable buildings and monuments that attract over 4 million visitors a year to Edinburgh, as well as supporting the city’s quality of life and encouraging other investment in the city.

“As our building grants are refundable on the sale of the property, Government and Historic Scotland will be receiving excellent value for money, seeing its investment in EWH used many times over in the coming years, while levering in an average of £4 for each £1 of public investment in each case. The grants also support valuable craft skills, which in tough times such as these tend to suffer”.

The restoration projects 

  • Well Court is a category A listed building dating from 1886, described by one architectural historian as “..a picturesque, beautifully composed jumble of crowstepped gables and turrets.”  The extensive restoration included repairs to the stonework, roof, windows, clock tower and communal areas. EWH awarded a grant of £1.1 million to help restore the building, with the aid of its 55 different owners who also helped fund the work.
  • Nicolson Street Edinburgh World Heritage awarded a grant to help fund extensive repairs to 37-41 Nicolson Street, where an original Victorian shopfront lies hidden beneath a modern façade. The property is a category B listed building, purpose-built in 1899 as multi-floored shop premises and currently used as a general store.
  • Greyfriars Kirkyard EWH awarded a grant for the conservation and repair of broken and damaged monuments, including a rare example of a ‘mortsafe’ - an iron cage put on top of a grave to prevent grave robbing.