Dewsbury residents and businesses invited to share memories of the town

We, in partnership with Historic England and Land Use Consultants, are developing a Historic Area Assessment which forms part of the work that is currently being undertaken through the Heritage Action Zone scheme.

Why is this important?

Earlier this year together with Historic England announced the Dewsbury Living Market Town Heritage Action Zone which is one of 20 Heritage Action Zones nationwide.  The Heritage Action Zone in Dewsbury is a partnership between Historic England and ourselves which targets resources to tackle a wide range of heritage-related regeneration projects.

Officially launched in May 2018 and running for the next five years, Dewsbury’s Heritage Action Zone seeks to improve the condition of run down and neglected buildings within the historic town centre by revitalising and bringing them back into use as housing, community or commercial spaces.

Councillor Peter McBride, Portfolio Holder for Economy at Kirklees Council said:

Dewsbury’s rich heritage and in particular Daisy Hill forms part of the town’s future plans. As well as some stunning architecture, there is real history within these streets. Our partnership with Historic England will not only bring these buildings back to life but help to regenerate the town centre.

“Shared stories from previous generations should be retold for future ones, and I encourage our residents to contribute to Dewsbury Heritage Action Zone.”

Trevor Mitchell, Planning Director for Historic England Yorkshire said:

“We’re really hoping that people will share their memories of Daisy Hill and tell us what it means to them. We would love to hear stories that have been passed down through generations and to see photos and mementoes that will help us get a better understanding of the place.  This will be invaluable in developing proposals for reviving the area.”

As a first phase of the Dewsbury Heritage Action Zone, Historic England has commissioned a ‘Historic Area Assessment’ study to improve understanding of the historical origins, development, changing fortunes and condition of the Westgate/Daisy Hill and Bond Street/Croft Street area to the west of the marketplace.

Who will be carrying out the assessment?

Land Use Consultants have been appointed to carry out the Historic Area Assessment and alongside the HAZ team are interested in collecting people’s views and memories about the streets and buildings within Dewsbury. All the information collected will form a large part of the HAA which will also focus on how the town has developed over time and why it is important both historically and to the people that use it.

What are Heritage Action Zones

There are 20 Heritage Action Zones already in operation. They are located in: Appleby, Bishop Auckland, Coventry, Dewsbury, Elsecar, Gosport, Greater Grimsby, Hull Old Town, King’s Lynn, North Lowestoft, Nottingham, Ramsgate, Rochdale, Stockton & Darlington Railway, Stoke-on-Trent, Sunderland, Sutton, Swindon, Walworth in London and Weston-super-Mare.

Heritage Action Zones are included in The Culture White Paper and aim to unleash the power in England’s historic environment to create economic growth and improve quality of life in villages, towns and cities.

Working with local people and partners, Historic England is helping to breathe new life into old places that are rich in heritage and full of promise – unlocking their potential and making them more attractive to residents, businesses, tourists and investors.

Historic buildings that have deteriorated through decades of neglect will be restored and put back into use; conservation areas improved to kick-start regeneration and renewal; and unsung places will be recognised and celebrated for their unique character and heritage, helping instil a sense of local pride wherever there’s a Heritage Action Zone.

Who are Historic England?

Historic England are a public body that helps people care for, enjoy and celebrate England’s spectacular historic environment, from beaches and battlefields to parks and pie shops. They protect, champion and save the places that define who we are and where we’ve come from as a nation. They care passionately about the stories these places tell, the ideas they represent and the people who live, work and play among them. Working with communities and specialists, they share their passion, knowledge and skills to inspire interest, care and conservation. So everyone can keep enjoying and looking after the history that surrounds us all.

How do I have my say?

You can email your memories and photos of the town to michelle.illingworth@kirklees.gov.uk.

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