Region: South East
Unitary Authority: Medway
Owner Type: Company,Many,Private
Funding Body: HLF CAPS; Public; Private
Year of Intervention: 1996 - 2001
Summary: Rochester and Chatham- upgrading the long high street of a historic garrison and dockyard settlement through the aid of Conservation Area Partnership schemes (CAPS).
Description: The scheme covered 51.8 hectares, lying between the town centres of Rochester and Chatham in Kent, including the three conservation areas of Star Hill, Star Hill to Sun Pier and New Road. Within this area, a total of 322 buildings were identified as being suitable for grant assistance.
Issue: The New Road and Star Hill to Sun Pier CAP scheme was initiated in 1996, in recognition of the need to tackle a number of issues in Rochester and Chatham, including protecting and finding new uses for historic buildings no longer in actively use and balancing the need for modern living and working with the quality of the urban environment.
Strategy: The scheme had a number of priorities including increasing the number of people living in the area, lowering the number of empty properties and vacant upper floors, improving the image and appearance of the streets, encouraging leisure uses along the riverside, carrying out a High Street environment enhancement scheme, creating a safer environment for residents and visitors and reducing pedestrian and vehicular conflicts. The scheme was jointly funded by Medway Council, English Heritage and Kent County Council in the first two years. In 1998, Heritage Lottery funding of £ 684,000 was sought to continue the scheme until 2001, which levered additional public sector funding of £684,000 and a further £4,024,569 of private sector funds were invested.
Outcome: Over the five-year lifetime of the scheme, 143 grants have been approved and over 70 buildings have benefited from grant aid. There has also been 1,200 square meters of environmental improvements. The CAP scheme has been instrumental in beginning to turn around the fortunes of the New Road and Star Hill to Sun Pier area. It has provided an admirable start to the regeneration process in Medway and has provided the catalyst for an increasing amount of non-grant-aided development and repair.
Keywords: Funding, Regeneration, Repair, Reconstruction & Restoration
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