The DHBT was awarded development funding for 'The Repair and Restoration of Wingfield Station Buildings' under the National Lottery Heritage Fund's Heritage Enterprise programme in March 2018 and commenced the project in Autumn 2019.
Alongside the development phase of the Heritage Enterprise project, a Historic England grant was secured in May 2020 to undertake work to the roof and trackside elevations. Following the appointment of ASBC Heritage & Conservation Specialists, urgent works started on site on the 16th October 2021. Specially designed scaffolding has been erected during night time 'possessions' of the line. This phases of the project is expected to conclude in the Spring of 2022.
The DHBT will be applying for the second stage of funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund in the winter of 2021. A significant amount of additional funding will also be required to meet the budget requirements.
The aspirations of our project are to both protect the rarity; the special architectural, aesthetic and cultural significance of Wingfield Station and to facilitate the provision of interpretation and document the changing fortunes of the building and changes to its setting.
The exceptional qualities of this pioneering building can be seen in both the desire to mitigate the impact of a large and intrusive engineering project into a sensitive and widely admired scenic landscape and to capitalise on this by ensuring that the station contributed to the landscape quality. It was part of a picturesque journey on the railway; for public enjoyment and an end in itself, as much as for getting from A to B.
The unusual survival of the building as a largely unaltered example of an early station makes a strong case for 'authentic restoration' of Thompson's very refined design and removal of some of the later unsympathetic alterations or short term repairs.
As the building has been revealed, we have established a clear understanding of the original and later alterations. There are, however, practical constraints imposed by its proximity to Network Rail's Midland Main Line and balance is needed to ensure its long-term preservation and maintenance is secured.