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Historic Gloucester building saved from dereliction

Posted on 20th March 2013

One of the historic waterway buildings in Gloucestershire was granted a new lease of life this month when it was saved from dereliction. Just one of the many heritage buildings which delight those staying in holiday cottages in the Forest of Dean, the North Warehouse at Sharpness Dock will be around for many years yet.

Sharpness Docks

The Grade II-listed warehouse has now been taken off of the Heritage at Risk register for the first time in a decade thanks to the efforts of the Canal & River Trust. The charity looks after around 2,000 miles of waterways in England and Wales and, now that the historic warehouse has is no longer derelict, plans can begin to be put in place for its full redevelopment.

The only survivor of four large warehouses which stored imported grain when Sharpness Docks opened, the North Warehouse has been an important part of the canal since 1874. The condition of the building deteriorated after it lay unused for over 30 years, and the strong winds which are directed up the Bristol Channel have left the roof and parapet guttering very much the worse for wear.

Extensive repairs have since been made, including re-slating the roof, timber refurbishment, securing all window openings against weather damage and repairing the guttering, all of which were completed in the last 7 months. Canal & River Trust heritage advisor David Viner announced that they are “delighted” that they have been able to make the warehouse weathertight, and said that the next plan is to find a use for the historic building.

Similar warehouses in Gloucester Docks have previously been restored and converted and have formed a crucial point in the regeneration of Gloucester’s dockside, and it is hoped that North Warehouse could soon undergo a similar process.

Gloucestershire’s heritage buildings are just one of the attractions that can be explored during Forest of Dean cottage holidays, and the North Warehouse could soon be a major attraction of Sharpness Dock if regeneration plans go ahead.

Image Credit: Image Credit: nicksarebi (flickr.com)