Thanks to the support of the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Gwrych Castle has been awarded a grant to help develop the vision for rescuing Gwrych Castle. We are therefore announcing two job opportunities!
Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust was founded to raise awareness of Gwrych’s plight and to establish a solution for the conservation and preservation of the Castle which, since 1924, had fallen into decline. Since 1997 the Preservation Trust has consistently sought to protect the Castle from the risk of physical deterioration and from arson and vandalism and, although some consolidation and urgent repairs have been undertaken, the condition of the main Castle remains perilous.
Gwrych Castle is recognised as one of Wales’ most important and significant buildings at risk. The wider Estate has significant remains from many previous centuries;; defensive, domestic and industrial.
The Castle is listed Grade I and the listing explains at length the many significant features from all periods of the Castle’s history and overall records that the Castle is ‘Graded I as a magnificent large scale example of a Romantic castellated mansion;; particularly important for its relationship with its site and its spectacular and extensive Picturesque composition, one of the finest examples of its date in Britain’.
In the wider Estate the woodlands are a rich habitat and a resource for environmental research, education (which the Preservation Trust has itself led) and for public enjoyment. In the wider landscape of North Wales, this commanding forested Estate is visually highly significant as one of the last untouched stretches of undeveloped land along the coast between Prestatyn and Penrhyn Bay.
In recent years the Trust has been able to open the Castle to the public, offer guided tours and engage many people in heritage activity. The Castle and gardens are open daily.
In summer 2018, the Castle was placed on the market and the Trust was successful in raising the funds required and effecting the purchase of the site to secure its future.
Now that we own the site, we are beginning to plan the work of the years ahead to stabilise, conserve, repair, restore and reopen the main areas of the Casle and to secure their long term future through income generating activities on the site.
National Lottery Heritage Fund have kindly supported the Trust from its Resilient Heritage programme to carry out a comprehensive programme of investigation, research, planning and preparation in order to be ready to progress our plans over the years that follow.
In summary, the Resilient Heritage project will enable us to:
• The capacity, skills and governance of the Trust will be strengthened through support, training and mentoring.
• The strategic approach to the whole site will be identified, including sympathetic end uses, phases of works and a masterplan and timetable for the long term development.
• The production of a business plan to enable the development and operation of the wider site with detailed financial, commercial and operational plans to support major funding applications.
• Identify the overall approach to activity, learning and engagement of people in the future and the ways in which the Trust can develop its telling of the stories of the site as it develops the bigger project.
• Architectural, landscape, design and cost implications of the masterplan will be developed to support a round 1 application to HLF.
• Development of forecasts of the economic, social and environmental outcomes of the masterplan and phased projects to enthuse stakeholders and support funding applications.
• Develop our current information, plans and directions into a clear and compelling masterplan for the site.
• Facilities for our volunteers will have been improved.
Please note that the appointments will be for a fixed period initially to work with the Trust through an NLHF funded Resilient Heritage project. At this stage it is anticipated that the role will run for some 16 months to spring/summer 2020.
Further stages of development work will then follow, but roles may be redefined and will be funding dependent.
Role 1: Project Coordinator
To support the Trustees to coordinate and assist in the management of all aspects of the project to restore Gwrych Castle.
In the first stage this will consist mainly of the coordination of the activities of the Resilient Heritage project and the development of the scheme and to support the Trust to plan implementation of the resulting projects.
The postholder will be expected, nonetheless, to contribute to the general operation and animation of the site alongside the Trust’s existing staff team and to carry out coordinative duties in respect of, e.g., works progressing to stabilise or clear areas of the Castle.
Role 2: Administrator for the Trust
To support the Trustees to manage, coordinate and deliver the Trust’s Resilient Heritage project.
The closing date for applications will be Monday 25th March, with interviews taking place on 27th, 28th and 29th March. The new role will then begin on April 1st. Please make contact via email to email@example.com