Historic sites at risk in West Norfolk

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A string of West Norfolk’s most important historic buildings have been deemed at risk in English Heritage’s latest survey.

After a focused effort to assess places of worship , the Church of St German’s and Church of All saints, East Winch, have been added to the Heritage At Risk register for the first time and both are categorised as in a “very bad” condition.

That classification has also been given to a porch in the courtyard of Hunstanton Hall, Old Hunstanton.

Denver Mill has been named as a new priority site for rescue and removal from the Register.

The mill is suffering from extreme damp, which is threatening its structure and has been awarded a grant from WREN.

Another new priority site is the ruins of St Mary’s Church, Appleton, which urgently needs high level works to its chancel and is at risk of losing its stone fabric.

Greg Luton, planning and conservation director for English Heritage in the East of England, said: “We face challenges in the years ahead to help save many other at risk sites including nationally-important windmills, earthworks and archaeological sites under cultivation.

“The way forward is to build on partnerships with owners, developers, Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), Natural England, councils, trusts and local groups.”

The Heritage at Risk Register highlights sites most at risk of being lost through neglect, decay or inappropriate development.

Other sites on the list are a gatehouse north of Denver Hall, in Ely Road, Denver, which is in a “poor” state.

The Chapel of St Andrew, Barret Ringstead, Old Hunstanton and Church of St Edmund, Egmere are both listed.

West Acre Priory, at West Acre, is said to be in a “very bad” condition.

Also on the register are: Church of All Saints, Bircham Newton; Church of St Mary, Great Bircham; Church of St Clement, Burnham Overy; Church of All Saints, Hilgay and Church of St mary the Virgin, Sedgeford.

The Church of St Peter and St Paul, in Church Lane, Swaffham and Church of All Saints, Litcham, have also been listed for the first time. Their conditions have been classified as “poor” and “fair” respectively.

In more positive news, the report highlights to renovation of Priory gatehouse, at Pentney, as one of the great successes in the East of England.

The gatehouse, which dates back to the 1,100s, was placed on the register in 1998, but has now been removed.

Howard Barber and partner Dita Lee bought the gatehouse in 2010 and have worked tirelessly to bring it into use as a wedding venue, as previously reported in the Lynn News.