What we’re doing – now and next

The Dockyard Church project

Funding

The Trust has received a Round 1 pass from the Heritage Lottery Fund for a Heritage Enterprise Grant which unlocks £500,000 of development funding, with a further £4.25m becoming available on the successful completion of the development phase.

We’re now in discussions with major donors to raise match funding. Swale Borough Council have already generously contributed £70,000 and further funding has been pledged by the Architectural Heritage Fund and the Pilgrim Trust.

Find out more about our partners here.

We are delighted to announce the award of a £199,000 grant from Historic England to begin our stabilisation work on the church (starting in late November). This grant will enable us to start implementing a full scaffolding design and to stabilise the tower in preparation for the larger refurbishment work to be carried out as part of the main HLF-supported project.

Historic England logo

The Trust is delighted to be working on this repair project with Martin Ashley Architects and the experienced building contractor Coniston.

Procurement and management

Over the last few months we have been busy procuring our professional team.  Glevum Consulting (Director Simon Hawkins) were appointed in June to do the overall management of the Project. They have been working with the Trust to recruit other members of the team.

We now have a Project Administrator (Catherine Hawkins) to deal with the day to day administration of the Project and a Fund raiser (Katy Jackson) to help with our fundraising.

After a successful interview in October PT Projects (Director Nic Gold) has been appointed as Cost Consultant for the project. PT Projects have worked on several significant Heritage Projects including Abingdon County Hall & Museum, Museum of the Order of St John, Orleans House & Gallery (Richmond) and Wat Tyler Country Park (Basildon). 

We shall be shortly interviewing for our Architect-led team who will inject the vision and design into the finished building.

Project Development

We have been working with our prospective partner, the London Youth Support Trust (LYST) on developing our ideas for how the finished church could accommodate business support facilities for young people. The LYST team are currently researching existing local need and provision to inform our plans for delivering a successful and sustainable project.

Arts projects

Running alongside the Dockyard Church project, the Trust are running a series of arts and education projects working with local people and schools, gathering memories of the church and the Dockyard, and bringing the community into the project at the earliest opportunity.

The Church garden is home to Room – a dedicated arts space hosting exhibitions and workshops inspired by the project. 

 

Next steps

Stabilising the building

Urgent work to stabilise the fabric of the building will begin late in November after a successful award of £199,000 from Historic England.

Design

The architects will develop designs for sensitively restored church that will be adapted for community use as a supported workspace incubator for young businesses, where they will have access to affordable facilities and professional advice to grow and thrive.

Public access to the restored building is a vital component, and the designs will also need to accommodate display of the restored and repatriated Sheerness Dockyard model, with its huge 1600 square feet footprint.

Interpretation

We’re working with local organisations to inform modern and relevant interpretation for the model, incorporating exciting Virtual Reality technologies designed by local young businesses.

The model formerly on display at Sheerness Dockyard. Image courtesy of English Heritage

The model formerly on display at Sheerness Dockyard. Image courtesy of English Heritage

We’re assembling a professional team to help save and restore the Dockyard Church