Historic England Awards a Grant of £137,600 for Repairs to St Michael’s Tower

Historic England has awarded a grant of £137,600 to Gloucester City Council to carry out repairs to St Michael’s Tower, the 15th-century landmark at the heart of the city.

The Grade II* listed building and scheduled monument, known locally as The Tower, currently has scaffolding surrounding it due to deterioration of the masonry. The building was placed on Historic England’s Heritage at Risk Register in November 2023.

The grant is a major contribution to the restoration project with the rest being funded by Gloucester City Council. The project will see the Tower’s lead roof and stonework repaired and architectural fragments replaced by stonemasons skilled in conservation.

Work is due to begin today (19 February) and expected to finish in April, subject to weather conditions.

Cllr Richard Cook, Leader of Gloucester City Council, said: “Gloucester is a beautiful and historic city so it’s important that we conserve its heritage for future generations. We’re delighted that Historic England has recognised the importance of St Michael’s Tower and this grant enables us to undertake the necessary repairs.”  

Rebecca Barrett, South West Regional Director at Historic England, said: “The Tower is one of Gloucester’s most familiar landmarks and plays an important part in city life as the home of the Heritage Centre. We’re pleased to support this project and look forward to seeing the repairs progress in the coming weeks”.

Martyn White, Chairman of Gloucester Civic Trust, said: “St Michael’s Tower has been vital to the successful operation of the Civic Trust since 2009. We are pleased that this work is being undertaken to stabilise the historic structure, so helping our operation to continue to deliver an important Heritage Centre in the very centre of the city for many more years”.

Richard Graham, Member of Parliament for Gloucester, said: “Wonderful news – well done Historic England for helping Historic Gloucester, and the only building linked to Richard of Gloucester (aka Richard III), who gave the City of Gloucester our charter without a fee ‘because of the special affection which we bear towards the said town of Gloucester’”.

St Michael’s Tower is the only surviving fabric of the former parish church of St Michael and All Angels, which was built between 1455 and 1472. The parish church was demolished in 1849 and rebuilt in 1851, but it closed in 1940 and was demolished in 1955, leaving the tower an isolated monument at the crossroads of Gloucester’s four main streets.

Since then, the tower has been used as offices, a bell museum, and a Tourist Information Centre. It is now a Heritage Centre run by the Gloucester Civic Trust.

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