ABP kickstarts restoring Grimsby docks heritage

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Building 74 has benefitted from heritage grant funding

Associated British Ports (ABP) historic buildings at the Port of Grimsby are being brought back into use as part of a programme of renovation works.

Twelve buildings have initially been earmarked for requiring urgent works. This list of buildings and required works have been identified from condition surveys undertaken by ABP, Historic England, and North East Lincolnshire Council, as part of grant-funded projects or through other surveys.

Simon Bird, Regional Director for the Humber said: “We are at a crucial stage in this exciting project. Ensuring works are carried out to these initial buildings proves our commitment to the value of our heritage and bringing the buildings back into use to pass on to future generations.

“The success of our recent Heritage Open Day at the port is part of the wider work we’re doing to help people understand this historic environment, while bringing new business and employment opportunities to the port, like the filming that has been taking place.”

Greg Lacey, Head of Property said: “The regeneration work being undertaken in the historic quarter known as The Kasbah is vital to the long-term future and security of this location. These buildings will become a great asset to the port and the town appealing to a wide range of business users. We are kick starting the works by prioritising building 74. This will include full scaffolding to the building to make it structurally secure as well as rebuilding the upper elevations and a full roof replacement.”

Part of the funding for the first of the buildings to be repaired, building 74 on Wharncliffe Road South, has come from the PSiCA (Partnership Scheme in Conservation Areas) heritage grant worth £150,000. The scheme is being delivered as part of the Greater Grimsby Heritage Action Zone. The scheme is a joint project between Historic England and North East Lincolnshire Council, with support from Associated British Ports (ABP).  

Cllr Hayden Dawkins, Portfolio Holder for Culture, Heritage and the Visitor Economy at North East Lincolnshire Council shares the excitement of all involved in what is currently happening in many areas of the Port of Grimsby, and the support of PsiCA (Partnership Schemes in Conservation Areas) in enabling the works on Building 74.

He said: “The rebirth of both the Kasbah and its surrounding area is a fine example of how partnership working and a desire for change is seeing a transformation that few would have envisaged a decade or so ago. To see this new life and new future happening before our eyes is fantastic – it allows us all to be reminded of what made our town and area great, whilst proving that we can provide fresh opportunities in very different ways.”

Louise Brennan, Regional Director (Midlands) for Historic England said: “We are very pleased to be able to support ABP in arresting the decline of Building 74 and carrying out repairs. It is a key building in the Kasbah conservation area. The huge success of the recent Heritage Open Day shows the interest the people of Grimsby have in the historic docks and the progress made to regenerate the area.”

The work being undertaken in the port of Grimsby within the Kasbah conservation zone has shown a shift by the company when it comes to what is left of our heritage. The Kasbah masterplan examines future opportunities and developments that present themselves in the context of historic buildings located within an operational port.

The Kasbah is becoming a place to go for many film makers, as being one of the few areas outside of London and the south east, which has conserved its heritage. Henderson Street, which features in the latest Netflix drama, Bodies, which airs on the streaming platform on October 16th, is one of the few streets on the port which presents an ideal closed film location with its red brick period buildings.

This roll out of renovation works is only the beginning for the historic area of the docks as it enters a new golden age.

Building 74 was once the offices for Sir Thomas Robinson and Son Limited. Tosh Robinson, as he was known, was a trawler owner, who had a few business operations on the port. He came from a long line of Cleethorpes fishermen, and converted from smack fishing to steam trawling and was one of the many pioneers to establish Grimsby as the premier fishing port in the world.