Rochdale town centre praised by Tony Lloyd MP for conservation progress

Rochdale MP, Tony Lloyd, welcomes news that Rochdale Town Centre Conservation Area is making good progress towards repair. The news comes as Historic England recently published its annual Heritage at Risk Register for 2021.

Tony said, “I am delighted that Rochdale Town Centre Conservation Area has made such good progress, and I offer my thanks to Rochdale Council and everyone in the community involved in the success of this project.

“It’s a great opportunity to celebrate the hard work and dedication of local people who have come together to care for historic places despite the challenges wrought by the Covid-19 pandemic over the past 18 months.

“The publication of the Heritage at Risk Register reminds us that historic places positively impact people’s quality of life. They have been an anchor for local communities during these uncertain times. From high street shops to places of worship, or cherished historic landscapes, they have been vitally important to us and to our wellbeing.”

Exterior, formerly Butterworth’s Jewellers, general view from north.

Duncan Wilson, Chief Executive of Historic England, added, “Our heritage is an anchor for us all in testing times. Despite the challenges we have all faced recently, this year’s Heritage at Risk Register demonstrates that looking after and investing in our historic places can contribute to the country’s economic recovery, bring communities together and help tackle climate change. Our historic places deserve attention, investment and a secure future.”.

Exterior, formerly Butterworth’s Jewellers, detail of blue wall plaque with information about Butterworth’s Jewellers.

There are 3 entries on the Heritage At Risk Register within the Rochdale constituency: Rochdale town centre; Church of Christ, Gandy Lane, and; St. John the Baptist Roman Catholic Church, Dowling Street

There is more to do. Over the last year, 130 historic buildings and sites across the country have been added to the register because of their deteriorating condition. Of the £14.5 million in grants given to historic places in England in the past year, £4.8 million were lifeline grants from the government’s Culture Recovery Fund. These emergency grants have kick-started essential repairs and maintenance at many precious historic sites during the pandemic and helped protect the livelihoods of the skilled craft workers who keep our cherished historic places alive

Reusing historic buildings is good for the planet. Historic England is working to highlight how reusing and adapting historic buildings, including places rescued from the Heritage at Risk register, can help to tackle climate change by avoiding high carbon emissions associated with demolishing existing buildings and building new ones. To meet the government’s target of being carbon neutral by 2050, recycling, reusing and responsibly adapting our existing historic buildings is vital.

Toronto Chicken, Drake St., Rochdale, Lancashire. Exterior with newly conserved stonework and windows featuring builder on his first day back to work after having had Covid 19.
Portrait of Zatoon Ahmad, Co-op Enterprise Hub, formerly Butterworth’s Jewellers.