Finish date set for restoration of Christchurch Priory walls

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priory walls christchurch
Overseeing the Priory walls revamp, from left, architect Columba Cook, site manager Greg Norman, Greendale director Rob Hooker and BCP Council’s Gareth Pritchard

A PROJECT to refurbish the historic walls around Christchurch Priory is hoped to be completed by the end of October.

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The conservation work includes removing vegetation and tree growth, dismantling some of the walls for rebuilding, and replacing weather-worn bricks with new, matching clay bricks.

The operation is being carried out by Greendale Construction, which also restored damaged parts of Highcliffe Castle to their former glory.

Cllr Mark Howell, BCP Council cabinet member for regeneration, culture and economy commented: “Under the terms of the lease for Christchurch Priory’s car park we have a responsibility to maintain the walls around the Priory and the quay.

“This needs to be done with considerable care and attention to detail on this historic and much-loved landmark in the town.

The Priory walls revamp is due to be completed by the end of next month

“This essential work will help to preserve the Priory and the many events that are held within its grounds, when they start up again, for the enjoyment of all, for generations to come.”

Dating back to 1094, the Priory was first constructed as a Norman church on the site of an old Saxon priory.

The Poole-based company started work to restore six walls in July for BCP Council. The council leases the land on which the walls sit and is responsible for maintenance around the Priory, quay and by the mill stream.

Rob Hooker, Greendale director, said: “The works will save these walls for future generations to enjoy, and we look forward to working with the team to achieve a successful hand over at the end of October.”

Greendale carried out a major project on Highcliffe Castle’s Penleaze wing at the end of 2018. Before being reopened to the public, the section had been inaccessible for more than 50 years due to fires and vandalism in the 1970s.

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