'Urgent' bid to save derelict Derbyshire building which was among world's first railway stations

A derelict Derbyshire railway station which was one of the first to be built in the world could be saved by an urgent grant from heritage experts.

Thursday, 25th June 2020, 6:00 am

Historic England has awarded £263,000 towards the repair of Wingfield Station, built in 1839-40, on the Midland Main Line between Ambergate and Clay Cross.

The old station building, which has been in private hands and considered ‘at risk’ for many years, was awarded Grade II* listed status in recognition of its national significance in 2015.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Wingfield Station when it was operational. Photo: The Historic England Archive.

Only eight per cent of all listed buildings are designated Grade II* or Grade I.

Amber Valley Borough Council had to use its legal powers to complete a compulsory purchase and begin repair work on the building last year.

Historic England also encouraged the Derbyshire Historic Buildings Trust (DBHT) to develop a conversion project and secure finance in order to take on the building and convert it into offices.

Dr Ben Robinson, partnerships leader at Historic England, said: “We can’t afford to lose a building of Wingfield Station’s historical importance.

The old station building at South Wingfield.

“Amber Valley Borough Council showed real leadership in exercising its legal powers to compulsory purchase the former station, and Derbyshire Historic Buildings Trust has pulled out all the stops to create an exciting and viable plan for the building’s future.

“The National Lottery is supporting this project, but work is desperately needed now and it will be some time before further Lottery funding can be obtained. So Historic England has provided this grant to make sure that the most urgent repairs are undertaken as soon as feasible and the building is saved.”

Lucy Godfrey, project co-ordinator for DHBT, thanked Heritage England for its ‘amazing’ offer of support.

She added: “Whilst DHBT had recently secured a provision for urgent repairs from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, once we had possession and were able to reassess, the scope and cost of this work far exceeded the budget.

“We can now address risk sooner by preventing further loss of and damage to this significant building. This will bring us much closer to being able to secure a long-term sustainable future for Wingfield Station without damaging its historical and architectural significance in the process.”

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.

In order for us to continue to provide high quality and trusted local news on this free-to-read site, I am asking you to also please purchase a copy of our newspaper.

Our journalists are highly trained and our content is independently regulated by IPSO to some of the most rigorous standards in the world. But being your eyes and ears comes at a price. So we need your support more than ever to buy our newspapers during this crisis.

With the coronavirus lockdown having a major impact on many of our local valued advertisers - and consequently the advertising that we receive - we are more reliant than ever on you helping us to provide you with news and information by buying a copy of our newspaper.

Thank you

Nancy Fielder, editor