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Great news for Tetbury. Goods Shed renovation commences

 Left to right – Councillor Stephen Hirst (Mayor of Tetbury), Councillor Kevin Painter (Deputy Mayor of Tetbury), William Cook (Chair Of Tetbury Rail Lands Regeneration Trust), Matt Aitkenhead (Managing Director Stonewood), Ian Maslin (Director Clark and Maslin) and Mike Hopkins (Contracts Manager Stonewood).

9th June 2016. Tetbury Town Council (TTC) and Tetbury Rail Lands Regeneration Trust (TRLRT) have commenced renovation works to the Goods Shed.

After much planning and partnership work TTC and TRLRT have secured funding to commence works on the derelict Goods Shed. TTC meeting on 2 June 2016, the council unanimously agreed to commence works on the Goods Shed. 

Stonewood builders have been appointed as the main contractor and will commence works week commencing 6 June 2016 . The project has been designed by Clark & Maslin who will also be project managing the works throughout. 

With much hard work and proven support for the project from local people the council, as owners of the building, believe the project will be fantastic for both local people and visitors to Tetbury.

The Goods Shed will provide a venue for the arts and welcome many performances, exhibitions and workshops. The Goods Shed works will be completed by Christmas 2016.

The Mayor of Tetbury, Councillor Stephen Hirst said: “At last the Goods Shed is on the move. There’s a great sense of satisfaction and the project will create a fantastic community asset. Tetbury will receive a huge amount of benefit.”

The Deputy Mayor of Tetbury, Councillor Kevin Painter said: “This is a truly amazing day and testimony to what people can achieve.”

Will Cook,Chair of Tetbury Rail Lands Regeneration Trust said: “Today is a momentous landmark in our scheme to transform the derelict Goods Shed into an art and culture hub for our community. I would like to thank the people of this town for believing in this project and supporting us. Most of all I commend the spirit of the amazing Goods Shed team who have given 200% and our Tetbury Town Council because together we have made it happen. Full steam ahead!”

Quick background

For over 10 years the building has been owned by TTC. Much thought and partnership working has gone into the final drawings of the build conversion, not least two years of meetings of a project group made up of the Chief Executive Officer of the council, three members of the TRLRT and Tetbury councilors. 

The final design created by architects Clark and Maslin incorporates all the needs of making this project a success. Original plans did not include the extension of the building (which is now included to house toilets and kitchen) but, from using the building for functions (even in its incomplete state), project organisers came to the conclusion that the main space provided by the building must not be compromised.
The detailed plans include a site office, green room, storage, kitchen (with serving counter to the outside), multiple female, male and disabled toilets and a large foyer. This final design through constant consultation meets the needs of likely performers (full disability access), functionality (office on site), storage (of tables when not in use) and meets regulations of hosting large events.
With over 30 well-attended events over the past two years - some that spread over weeks at a time - we have engaged constantly with our end users of the arts centre. We have listened to what events people would like in Tetbury and have taken note of events that are more popular and well attended than others. We have seen sell out concerts and week long trickles of visitors and local people visiting exhibitions. 

As well as providing an excellent venue and attractions for local people the Goods Shed will provide;

Support for Rural Tourism – 

  • developing high quality services that encourage tourists to stay longer, linking tourism providers and extending the tourism season
  • supporting tourism activities linked to providing culture, arts events and festivals promoting local culture
  • in the wider context of the project the goods shed is the entrance to an access path all the way to Kemble and we are currently working with land owners to open up this path as a bridle way (currently being consulted on at Gloucestershire County Council level) this will help develop access infrastructure as a path and cycle way helping connect people to the natural environment

As well as a Public Works Loan taken out by TTC, funds have been secured from extensive fundraising events and many independent funders including;

  • Summerfield Trust
  • Cotswold District Council Community Projects Fund
  • Cotswold Conservation Board
  • David Thomas Trust
  • Jack Lane Trust
  • Garfield Weston Foundation
  • Louise Verity

Applications for further funding to support the completion of works include Cotswold LEADER programme and Gloucestershire Environmental Trust.

Kevin Painter also said; “This is a very proud day for Tetbury, thanks to the dedication and hard work of everyone involved. Two people whose names will always be linked to the Goods Shed are Chairman of TRLRT Will Cook and of course Sue Stoner whose tireless dedication even in her final days was amazing.  It is very true that we shape our buildings and afterwards they shape us and this building has been shaped with love, affection, creativity and positivity and I’m sure it will carry on throughout generations to come.”

June is 'Hobbs House Bakery' month!

Hobbs Bakery image from Tetbury Goods Shed Calendar

Midsummer draws near and so we come to June and the Fabulous Baker Boys' page in the also-seriously-fabulous Tetbury Goods Shed calendar.

Hobbs House Bakery was established in the Cotswolds in the 1920s. It's a true family business with five generations of baking experience; now bringing up the sixth batch of aspiring bakers. 

Hobbs' expert team of bakers produce an exceptional range of high quality breads, pastries and confectionery for the shops in Chipping Sod bury, Nailsworth and, of course, Tetbury.

You'll find their Tetbury shop in Church Street, just up the road from St Mary's. Just fabulous!

Hobbs House Bakery Tetbury

Fab calendar photo at top of story by Colin Peacock



For all the Wolds, a stage!

If you've been down to Tetbury's rail lands park in the last few days, you couldn't fail to notice that our outdoor performance stage is looking splendidly complete.

Demountable posts and rails provided the finishing touch, recalling the platform's original use as a cattle loading dock for the railway (they will come off for performances).

With the Shed itself due to close, soon, for several months' rebuilding work, we plan to stage some low-key theatrical and other events on the platform this summer.

Staging a revival

Restoring the Victorian cattle platform has always been part of the Trust's plan for the Rail Lands. And it needed a lot of TLC as, by 2015, over half a century of neglect had taken its toll:

Months of voluntary effort went into the rebuild. Graham Cleaver, Will Cook, Barrie Doyle, James Scurlock, David Walker, not forgetting Bill the dog, took on the lion's share. Their hard work saved the Trust over £25,000, which is what it would have cost to employ a contractor. The saved money will go towards the restoration of the Goods Shed itself.

James Scurlock, Graham Cleaver and Will Cook 

Generous donations from local supporters made the rebuild possible, by meeting the cost of materials and items like the safety fence. Huge thanks to Louise Verity, Carsten Mikkelsen, Sheila and David Todd (ex-Tetburians now living in the US) and Rob and Margaret Gibbs. Together these individuals contributed half the cost.

We also received £1,000 from the Jack Lane Charitable Trust, £200 from the Tetbury Lions and a £250 'small sparks' award from the Barnwood Trust, which paid for skip hire and the paving of the wheelchair ramp.

Who says they don't make 'em like they used to?

Concert is a sell-out success

The Orchard Room on the Highgrove Estate played host to a memorable recital by internationally-renowned composer Jan Vriend on 2 March.

Organised by Jan’s partner, Josie Price, with the help of Tetbury Goods Shed group members Chris Burrows and Karen Quaddy, the event raised over £2,000 for the Tetbury Goods Shed Arts Project.

Tickets for the event, which was also supported by The Royal Oak Tetbury, Whatley Manor Hotel and Calcot Spa, sold out quickly as many music lovers in the area remembered Jan’s previous fundraiser at Chavenage in 2014.

Playing his own instrument, moved from his town centre home to the Orchard Room for the occasion, Jan’s programme followed the theme of ‘a fantasy to a dream’

Opening with JS Bach’s jubilant Fantasie in C-minor BWV 906, Jan followed up with the same commposer’s technical and harmonically challenging collection of four duets (BWV 802-5).

His performance of the complete Chopin 24 Preludes enthralled the audience, especially some of the lesser-known pieces, described by Jan as “so unusual, alien and mind-blowingly-original they seem hell-bent on defying every rule in the book.”

The Orchard Room’s excellent accoustics allowed Jan’s compositional skills to be fully appreciated during his own Liebesträum No. 4 - the ‘dream’ part of the evening’s theme.

Jan wrote six Liebesträume between 2009 and 2011 for fellow Dutch pianist Ralph van Gaat, who premiered Nos 1-3 and 5 and 6 at Westonbirt School in 2013. This year’s performance of No 4 - the most technically-challenging to play - completed the cycle.

He culminated the programme with a return to Chopin, drawing out the full palette of instrumental textures in the Sonata in B-flat minor Op. 35, before closing in dramatic style with a brief and breathtaking Schubert Impromptu.

Will Cook, chairman of Tetbury Rail Lands Regeneration Trust, said: “It was a fantastic evening. Tetbury is fortunate to have such talent in the town and we are very priviledged that he has chosen to devote so much time to it in support of the Goods Shed project.”

Jan added: “I can’t wait for the Shed to open its doors early next year. It will have so much to off er the town. I am hoping to hold a series of ‘educational’ recitals there next year where we’ll look at the way some great composers worked and hopefully allow people to enjoy their music even more.”