Fantastic news today that Lincoln Cathedral Connected has secured its major Heritage Lottery Grant which, alongside the £1.5m already approved by the David Ross Foundation, will allow the Cathedral to realise the Connected project.
The team effort behind this project has been immense and multi-layered, with everyone involved seeing the benefits the Connected scheme could bring to Lincolnshire.
Globe has been part of the team working on the project since 2013 and we are very proud to have made a contribution to the success of the bid in our ‘home city’.
Globe’s element of the work has been a journey from preparing the Initial Feasibility Study, where Caroe Architecture worked with Globe to add a visual interpretation of our findings and proposals. From there we moved to an outline Business Plan and then to provide an Economic Impact Assessment, all of which formed part of the successful Stage 1 HLF application.
2014 found Globe preparing and submitting a full OJEU compliant tender to prepare a business plan to support the Stage 2 HLF Application. Globe, with specialist leisure accountants Insight Chartered Accountants as a sub-contractor, was appointed though the competitive tendering process and our work on Lincoln Cathedral Connected Stage 2 started in May 2015.
It quickly became clear that one of our biggest and ongoing challenges was modelling the likely change in visitor numbers resulting from the Connected project. This was because of the re-opening of Lincoln Castle; the opening of the new David Ross Magna Carta Vault and the Magna Carta 800 Anniversary all happened in 2015. This created a welcome and very significant step-change in visitor numbers to the City’s Cathedral Quarter but made it unrealistic to model predictions from either the Cathedral’s or the city’s historic visitor data, so we worked out a slightly different approach.
By September 2016 we were able hand over a completed final business plan covering all of the revenue-generating elements of the Connected project projected through to project completion and beyond to the subsequent years. Along the way we had also helped sort out a few planning issues, commissioned a Transport Statement, and dipped briefly into the utilities, drainage issues, and carbon footprint – so business as normal.
The interdisciplinary approach that the Cathedral’s management team chose to adopt allowed draft work to be considered in a very collaborative way so that design, technical and commercial solutions blended throughout the process and I’m sure that was apparent to the HLF Staff and Trustees who met and questioned the whole team as part of their assessment of the Grant Application.
Delivery will be the next major stage and that will see the Old Deanery on Eastgate linked to a new building constructed behind the Cathedral Cloister to create a new Visitor Centre, Exhibition Space, Café, Shop and Education Suite; the Deans Green and the grounds to the north of the Cathedral will be opened and landscaped as public space; the magnificent West Front will be fully restored; Minster Yard will be reconstructed to give level access to the Cathedral and improve the public space; and Exchequergate Arch will be restored and the big crack in the north arch fixed.
It’s not very often that the majority of the ideas coming out of an initial Feasibility Assessment find their way through to the implementation stage of a project as complex as this one. It’s great that this is the one that did, and I get to walk past every day on my way to and from Globe’s office.
It’s impossible to end this blog without acknowledging the efforts of the whole consultancy team and all of those involved from the Cathedral but in particular the time and effort that Subdean Revd Cannon John Patrick put in to leading the project and the huge workload that was undertaken by Dr Anne Irving as the primary author and co-ordinator of the HLF Bid.
Thanks guys, it was great to be involved in this one.