Springhead’s listed mill building is the hub of all the Trust’s activities, but the roof is leaking, and its chimneys, gutters and other features are in urgent need of repair. We have already secured nearly two thirds of the restoration costs. The trustees have now launched an appeal for local people and businesses to help raise the shortfall so we can complete the repairs.
The mill building is where school groups go for activities on a wet day, and where they eat most of their meals. It provides space for community groups to meet and for indoor concerts, talks and exhibitions, and all our food is produced in its catering-sized kitchen. The upstairs function rooms are also regularly used for weddings which help bring in funding to support our charity. All these activities are at risk if we can’t repair the roof.
With funding from the Historic Houses Foundation and from Dorset Council’s Capital Leverage Fund we have had asbestos deposits removed from the roof spaces so we can safely go ahead with the necessary roof works use the loft rooms once again. Funding already secured for the works includes grants from Historic England’s Covid-19 Emergency Heritage at Risk Response Fund and the Valentine Charitable Trust which will go towards replacing the badly damaged tiled roof which has been letting water into the building, damaging battens and historic timbers.
We now need to raise additional funds for the re-tiling and for roof-related works including re-pointing the brick chimney stacks, repairing the gutters and downpipes, replacing the roof lights, installing additional insulation and fitting out the loft spaces, providing much-need accommodation for staff, visitors and partner organisations. We are keen to carry out all these works at the same time, to take advantage of the building being scaffolded, saving time and reducing disruption.
The total cost of the work is around £79,000, of which we have already secured nearly £50,000. We are applying for further grants but would also be hugely grateful to anyone who can make a donation, however small. Your help is particularly appreciated during these difficult times, when our income from usual sources including weddings and school visits has much reduced. Thank you for your support.