Three Years of Investment Confirmed to Repair Perth’s Historic Buildings

Perth and Kinross Heritage Trust wish to announce the third phase of the Perth City Heritage Fund bringing £750,000 of Scottish Government investment through Historic Environment Scotland to assist with conserving and repairing Perth’s historic buildings.

 Regenerating through Conservation since 2012

Following the return of city status in 2012, Perth and Kinross Heritage Trust has encouraged the regeneration of Perth’s historic buildings by administering the Perth City Heritage Fund (PCHF), a scheme funded by the Scottish Government regeneration strategy for cities through Historic Environment Scotland. PCHF’s aim is to foster economic regeneration by assisting owners of historic buildings within the Perth Centre and Perth Kinnoull Conservation Areas with the costs of high quality repairs using traditional materials and best conservation practice.

The two phases of the PCHF which ran between 2012-2015 and 2015-2018 provided £1.1m grant assistance to 46 projects, drawing in a total investment of over £2.5 million to the conservation and repair of Perth’s historic buildings. These phases targeted empty, under-used or dilapidated buildings in particular with demand for the scheme being so high that both phases were fully subscribed.

PCHF Phase 3: Looking Ahead

This month, Historic Environment Scotland have announced that their support of the Perth City Heritage Fund will continue for the next three years allowing Perth and Kinross Heritage Trust to launch a third phase of the scheme. The main focus of phase 3 will be to offer grant-assistance to historic building owners with repairs in accordance with best conservation practice. This will build on the positive partnership working with Perth and Kinross Council developed in the earlier phases of the scheme where particular success has been achieved in tenement repairs. Here, support, guidance and funding to Owners’ Associations has enabled a number of key listed tenements to be transformed through communal repair schemes.

PCHF manager Sara Carruthers explained: “We have three themes for targeting the fund: Comprehensive repairs to historic tenements in multiple ownership; Repairs to historic buildings used or owned by local charities; and unused or under-used historic buildings, possibly in single ownership, being brought back into use.”

The scheme will operate between 2018 and 2021 with grants available for eligible works to historic buildings within the boundaries of the Perth Central and Kinnoull Conservation Areas.

Sara continued: The grant themes are intended to focus the scheme’s efforts and maximise the regenerative impact of the funding from HES to bring both social and economic benefit to the city and its environs. Owners who are unsure if their building is eligible shouldn’t be deterred from getting in touch. We encourage enquiries as early as possible to ensure that the proposed works are eligible. We’ll consider large and small projects which meet the principle objectives of the scheme and the funding criteria.”

Educational and training projects will also be run to raise awareness of the importance of appropriate repairs using traditional materials and the skills associated with carrying them out. This will include the return of the popular traditional building skills roadshow that has taken place on King Edward Street in September for the past two years. This event offers secondary school pupils at career choice stages and members of the public the opportunity to try their hands at traditional crafts.

PKHT Chairman Sue Hendry commented:

We’re delighted to be continuing to work with Historic Environment Scotland and entering a third phase delivering the Perth City Heritage Fund. We look forward to grant assisting owners with conservation and repairs to their buildings and improving the city centre streetscape, the condition of people’s homes and enhancing the economic vibrancy of the city.”

HES CEO Alex Paterson joined PKHT Chairman Sue Hendry and PCHF manager Sara Carruthers to announce the funding outside the nearly completed Phase 2 grant-assisted property 31b-37 High Street. Business owner, grantee & chairman of 31b-37 High Street owners’ association Derek Paterson joined them for the occasion to celebrate the achievements of the previous phases.

PCHF awarded two grants to revitalise the late 18th century tenement of 31b-37 High Street.  A grant of £159,000 was awarded to the High Street Owners’ Association in 2017 to help meet the costs of a common repairs scheme using traditional materials in accordance with best conservation practice and an environmental enhancement grant of £20,000 towards the cost of a reordered shopfront has enabled Derek to expand his business into the vacant shop next-door increasing its retail and workshop space and bringing the whole ground floor of this prominent High Street location back in to use.

Sara and the Perth City Heritage Fund team are now inviting expressions of interest and prospective applicants are encouraged to make contact with Perth and Kinross Heritage Trust through the website or by calling 01738 477093.

You can find out more about Perth City Heritage Fund at: www.pkht.org.uk/pchf

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