Exciting plans for the transformation and restoration of part of Warrington’s Walton Hall and Gardens have moved a step closer thanks to a winning bid for initial support from the National Lottery via the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
The borough council worked with partners Myerscough College, Walton Lea Partnership and the Friends of Walton Estate on the winning bid which includes plans to restore the historic conservatory and stable buildings and transform the old buildings into a dedicated learning centre.
The stable yard, once occupied by Lady Daresbury’s prized Kerry cattle, will become classrooms and offices, with the historic conservatory and vinery used as teaching, growing and display space.
Subjects taught at the new learning centre will include horticulture and animal care, with students carrying out project work on the Walton
Estate and in the Children’s Zoo as part of their course.
Walton Lea Partnership’s work will be carried out side-by-side with the College, allowing people of all ages and abilities to learn and thrive together. The project also includes a schools “model garden” that will allow children from Warrington schools to learn how to grow their own plants and vegetables.
An important part of the project will be to re-open the conservatory area to visitors. Part of the main conservatory will be a public space where visitors can learn about the horticultural heritage of the site and see development and training work being undertaken.