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“I love Grange Court. I met a man
there once who hit me with a trout.
We ended up getting married!”
This story, and many others besides, reflect the central place of Grange Court in the history and community of Leominster, Herefordshire.
Grange Court is a beautiful timber-framed market house in Leominster with ornate, grotesque and often bizarre carvings that give it its Grade II* listing. Built by John Abel in 1633, it’s a local treasure with an eclectic story.
We were appointed by Herefordshire Council to prepare an Interpretation Plan for Grange Court to support a HLF application. In preparing the plan we ran consultation workshops with community groups including young people, people with disabilities (mostly learning disabled), and Bridge Street Buddies – a group of young mums from a disadvantaged part of town. We also consulted on our draft proposals with a stall in the market square – complete with t-shirts and balloons to make more of a splash.
We were then commissioned to help prepare the Activity Plan and Action Plan and meet the HLF case officer in support of the Stage 2 application. The outcome was a grant award and an interpretive scheme with a strong sense of local ownership.
We worked closely with Herefordshire Council and local community volunteers to uncover the stories and devise a scheme that worked in harmony with the historic building. This included a ‘heritage news channel’
featuring local actors playing the role of historic characters from the town’s fascinating past, ghostly projections and a series of newly commissioned Hogarthian-style illustrations. A hand held screen-based tour enables visitors to delve deeper into the stories and elegant and sensitively-designed interpretive interventions feature throughout the rooms.