COMPLETED: Old Town Gardens Gate Restoration Project
Swindon’s Old Town Gardens have finally had restoration work finished on their entrance gates that have seen the parks main entrance gates renovated for the first time since they were installed at the start of the century.
Having been renovated by a team of heritage blacksmiths, the installation of the main gates at the Gardens’ Quarry Road entrance has finally been completed with the entrance set to be back open to the public from next week.
First erected at the start of the century, the gates had suffered an immeasurable amount of wear and tear whilst under the ownership of the council and have now been restored to their former glory by the Old Town Parish Council.
The iconic gates have been restored in their original Venetian red colour and mark the start of a series of upgrades to the amenities of the Old Town gardens.
Speaking about the restoration project, Neil Hopkins Old Town Parish Councillor, Chair of Leisure Amenities for South Swindon Parish Council, said:
“We took over the parks from Swindon Borough Council, transferred to us legally about 18 months ago and we had to identify some key areas that needed repair,” he said.
“The gates were one of those areas and is some places it was held together by only paint.
“We had our projects officer go and get quotations from experts because you need a heritage blacksmith to do this work and Peter Neil know exactly what they are doing.
“We then had interest from the heritage officer which was funny because they didn’t take any interest when the gates were falling apart but when we were trying to fix them they did,” he added.
“This is the original paint colour which is Venetian red. The overall cost was around £75,000 and we had a partial grant from community first.
“The gates are Grade II listed so we couldn’t replace them and now we have newly restored gates.
“All gates in the park have been done in turn and this was the last set to be done.
"They will be open to the public next week, all we need to do now is fit them.
“We’ve had a terrific amount of visitors to the Town Gardens this year and it’s great to see.
“We now have other plans to restore other areas of the gardens,” finished Mr Hopkins.