Grant Awarded to Revive the Brickworks Museum in Hampshire
Historic England has awarded £246,000 to fund a new roof to cover and protect the huge Grade II* listed brick kiln at the Brickworks Museum in Bursledon, Hampshire.
The work will see the asbestos roof above the historic Staffordshire type kiln replaced with corrugated fibre cement sheeting and translucent roof lights. The new roof will secure the future of the kiln by preventing it from further deterioration. Additional funding was provided by Hampshire County Council and works are underway.
The grant is part of a wider project to open the Bursledon Brickworks site up to the public and benefit the local community. Two historic drying sheds are set to be transformed into office space as small start-up units for businesses.
The aim is to ensure that the historic elements of the Brickworks are repaired and in good condition so that they can be removed from the Heritage at Risk register.
The kiln is a key element of the museum. If it had become unsafe, or even lost through decay, the whole future of the museum could have been in jeopardy. The museum does such great work with local schools and volunteers, so we are pleased to give support and help create a sustainable future.
Bursledon Brickworks, built in 1897 by Robert and Edward Ashby, is Grade II* listed and of national importance, being the only remaining Victorian steam-driven brickworks in the UK. It holds the largest collection of bricks and brick-making artefacts in the country.
Celebrating its 125th anniversary last year, it is an important part of Southampton’s industrial heritage. At its peak, the brickworks produced around 20 million bricks a year and many of the local buildings were constructed using the bricks from Bursledon.
The Bursledon Brickworks Museum is looked after by volunteers who continue to develop and grow a range of initiatives, including an education programme. The museum reopens to the public on 2 April 2023.
We have been watching the old roof rapidly deteriorate over the last ten years and hoping we would be able to replace it before it finally failed. Luckily, with the help from Historic England, this has now been made possible and the kiln is being given a new lease of life. We are very grateful for their support as finding the funds to undertake repairs such as this is challenging.