Lottery fund gives £1.65m to project to regenerate Diss
- Credit: Archant
The delighted team behind a project to regenerate an historic part of Diss received 'the great news' this week that the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) had agreed to provide a grant of £1,656,400.
The Diss Heritage Partnership has been given the money for improvements to the so-called 'Heritage Triangle,' which includes work to the Corn Hall and St Nicholas Street and Market Hill, while a new boardwalk across part of the town's mere could also be created.
Sheila Moss-King, project manager for the partnership, said: 'This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to transform Diss and securing this grant from the HLF is a massive vote of confidence in the project.
'It's been a real team effort to get where we are, but we are not quite over the finishing line yet.
'We need another £40,000 to hit our target of raising £100,000 locally and now is a great time for local businesses and residents who would like to get involved to donate.
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'All being well we will start work in mid-2015 and have the project completed by the summer of 2016.'
Diss mayor Keith Kiddie said: 'The poet John Betjeman once said of Diss, 'Diss doesn't show itself at once...you have to go and find its treasures.'
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'The project will show what a great heritage the town has in its buildings and its stories. But the HLF grant isn't just great news for preserving and enhancing the historic heart of Diss, it's also great news for the whole of Diss and will provide a major economic boost to the area as more people choose to visit and shop in this town and discover our 'treasures.''
John Fuller, leader of South Norfolk Council, said the project would provide a great new heritage and cultural hub for south Norfolk.
The potential changes include work on the town's Corn Hall providing a foyer, box office, gallery space and a heritage learning zone, as well as restoration of the historic fabric of the building.
Work could also be undertaken to raise the carriageway to pavement height, enabling pedestrians to move more freely around St Nicholas Street and Market Hill, while still allowing traffic around the triangle.
The boardwalk will be made from recycled plastic, which will enable walkers to learn more about the wildlife to be found on the waterbody.
For details on how to donate, visit www.heritagetriangle.co.uk.
What would you do to give Diss a boost? Email email@example.com.