£4.5m boost for historic Cardigan Castle

Thursday 29 September 2011

Cardigan Castle

Cardigan Castle

A £10m restoration plan for Cardigan Castle will get underway following a Welsh Government funding boost, creating 19 jobs, Housing, Regeneration and Heritage Minister, Huw Lewis announced today [29 September 2011].

The Cadwgan Trust’s plans to restore this historic monument have been made possible with £4.3m from the European Regional Development Fund and over £460,000 from the Welsh Government through Cadw.  This is in addition to funding announced earlier this year from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The investment will enable work to be carried out to conserve the Castle walls and to restore the complex of buildings and gardens at the site which was once the stronghold of the Lord Rhys and the Princes of Deheubarth as well as the location of the first Eisteddfod.

As part of the project, the site will also be developed as a multi-functional facility for community and recreational use as well as for learning, including Welsh language, cultural, crafts, environment and horticulture studies. It will also create 19 jobs to support the additional services.

While on a visit to the castle, Huw Lewis said: “Our heritage and culture is what makes us unique. Conserving this rich, historic environment will create an attraction that will encourage more visitors, boost tourism and provide opportunities for the local community, bringing wider economic benefits to Cardigan and the surrounding area of South Ceredigion.”

Minister for European Programmes, Alun Davies said: “I am pleased that we are maximising our EU resources to create a venue which will attract visitors for both cultural and learning activities, supporting skills and jobs, and bringing further economic and social opportunities to the region.”

Through the project heritage skills and conservation management training will be offered in close cooperation with Coleg Ceredigion, Ceredigion Training, Canolfan Tywi Centre and other training providers. The complex will also be freely available to the local community involving them in running the site on a voluntary basis.

Chairman of Cadwgan Buildings Preservation Trust, Jann Tucker, said:
"Today's announcement by Huw Lewis AM, following on the Heritage Lottery Fund grant, now positions us to bring to fruition our hopes and dreams for the restoration of Cardigan Castle - a project that so many people have worked so hard for, over so many years.

“The European Regional Development Fund funding alongside that of Cadw's is a shining example of the Welsh Government's heritage-led regeneration focus - transforming not only one of our most iconic cultural landmarks but the economic fortunes of an entire community and surrounding area. We are thrilled to have been given such an opportunity."

The project has also received funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Ceredigion County Council and Cardigan Town Council. Support and guidance was also given by the Prince's Regeneration Trust.