Pittville Gates Restoration
Friends of Pittville will be formally launching the Pittville Gates Restoration Project on Wednesday 7 April from 5.30pm at the Townhouse Hotel in Pittville Lawn, in the presence of the Mayor of Cheltenham Anne Regan and Martin Horwood, Cheltenham’s M.P.
Joseph Pitt had the Pittville Gates built in 1833 as the grand entrance to his new Pittville Estate and they soon became one of Cheltenham’s landmarks. Cheltenham Borough Council turned the Estate gardens into a public park in the 1890s and added the central wrought iron arch to the Gates in 1897 to mark the visit of the Prince of Wales in Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee year. However the Gates went into a decline later in the 1900s, the opening gates were removed, the pillars damaged by vehicles and the surroundings neglected.
The aim of the restoration project is to re-create the Gates as they looked in their prime in 1897, replacing the crumbling stone pillars, renovating the existing ironwork, replacing the missing carriage and pedestrian gates and adjoining railings, and landscaping the surrounding area with paving and planting.
The work will not be cheap. The gateway is 66 feet wide and the six forest stone pillars are ten feet high. The remaining ironwork needs complete renovation not just a coat of paint and the missing ironwork (gates and railings) are of a unique cast iron design. Based on initial costings, and including project management costs and VAT, the total could reach nearly £350 thousand. The project will therefore be divided into phases with the first phase, restoring the existing structure and landscaping the surroundings, costing closer to £120 thousand. Friends of Pittville will be making applications to national and local funding bodies and running a programme of fundraising events.
We will also be planning a programme of activities for schoolchildren, residents and visitors to encourage learning about the craft skills and history associated with the Gates and their location at the entrance to Cheltenham’s Heritage Park.
For more information about Friends of Pittville and the Project visit the website:
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