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Coventry’s Old Grammar School no longer at risk

22 June 2016

One of Coventry’s oldest and most treasured buildings has finally been taken off an ‘at risk’ list after a £1.5million restoration. In November last year, the Historic England At Risk Register said the 12th century Old Grammar School in Hales Street was in “poor condition” however the register was drawn up before work had finished, and after inspection it was said that it would be taken off the register in 2016.

English Heritage Grade 1 listed and left empty and neglected for 40 years, the Old Grammar School needed extensive repairs to make it safe and to return it to its former glory. Consisting of three principle elements, a 14th century infirmary hall, a chapel and the north aisle from the Hospital of St John, it later became a Grammar School in the 16th century with an early 20th century extension dating from its time as a church hall. Extensive weather damage had left the buildings with worn stonework, leaks and a bay window that was in need of restoration and repair. The buildings were refurbished as part of the £9.5 million Coventry Transport Museum redevelopment which was supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Arts Council England.

Nick Molyneux, principal inspector of historic buildings and areas, said:

“I am pleased to say that we noted that the condition of the site has improved to the extent that we feel it can be removed from the register”

Gary Hall, Chief Executive of Culture Coventry, said:

“We are thrilled to have received this great news from Historic England. The Old Grammar School has been carefully repaired and refurbished so that it has a new and sustainable use as a part of Coventry Transport Museum. A lot of people have worked incredibly hard to help refurbish this special building, we’ve replaced the stone work to make it watertight, as well as replacing the beautiful bay window at the east end which was crumbling away because of the weather. There is a new floor and heating in there for the first time. It really is now a building that can be used by the public. It is truly a privilege to have been able to bring Coventry’s oldest secular building back to life, and ensure it’s future for years to come.”

The building will open to the public for special events throughout the year and is available to hire, please contact hospitality@culturecoventry.com or telephone 024 7623 4296 for more information. 

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