William Blake's cottage is among sites added to Heritage Risk Register

William Blake's cottage is among sites added to Heritage Risk Register

Poet William Blake’s cottage where he wrote the words to ‘Jerusalem’ is among 130 sites added to the Heritage Risk Register – but London’s Battersea Power Station and a landscape painted by JMW Turner are among those saved

  • Historic England has updated its heritage at-risk register, including poet William Blake’s cottage
  • The thatched home is among 1,459 buildings on the list, which includes England’s oldest windmill
  • In contrast, the newly-developed Battersea Power Station has been removed from the list after 30 years 
  • Plumpton Rocks in Harrogate, which was painted by JMW Turner, has also been saved and removed from the list

The thatched cottage where poet William Blake wrote the words to the hymn Jerusalem, one of England’s oldest windmills and the remains of a wild natural garden are among the historic sites at risk of being lost forever.

In contrast, sites such as London’s Battersea Power Station, an 18th century landscape scene painted by English Romantic artist JMW Turner and the world’s tallest three-sided obelisk in Somerset have been saved, according to this year’s Heritage at Risk Register.

They are among the 233 sites in England which have been saved from neglect, decay or inappropriate development and taken off the register while 130 deteriorating venues have been added to the list.

Blakes Cottage (pictured) in Felpham, Bognor Regis, where the famous poet William Blake once lived, has been added to Historic England’s at risk register

The grade II-listed Sussex cottage where Blake and his wife Catherine lived in the early 1800s has been placed on the register due to decay and problems with the thatch roof and masonry

There are now 4,985 sites on the register which is 112 fewer than in 2020, the Government heritage agency Historic England said.

The grade II-listed Sussex cottage where Blake and his wife Catherine lived in the early 1800s has been placed on the at-risk register due to decay and problems with the thatch roof and masonry.    

The building was placed under the protection of Historic England in 2015, while a fundraising appeal has been launched for the site’s restoration.

Historic England said that among the places at risk are 1,459 buildings or structures, 2,001 non-structural archaeological locations, 923 places of worship, 104 parks and gardens, 491 conservation areas, three battlefields and four protected wreck sites.

Bourn Mill in South Cambridgeshire is one of England’s oldest windmills but it faces collapse due to its rotting central supporting beams.

The main post of the grade I-listed mill is believed to be from a tree felled after AD 1515.

The site was an inspiration for the work of architect Lord Foster, who prepared drawings of the mill while studying at Manchester University.

The remains of a natural garden at Warley Place in Essex created by influential horticulturalist Ellen Willmott are at risk.

Bourn Mill (pictured) in South Cambridgeshire is one of England’s oldest windmills but it faces collapse due to its rotting central supporting beams

The main post of the grade I-listed mill is believed to be from a tree felled after AD 1515

The inside of Bourn Mill in Cambridgeshire, which has been added to Historic England’s at-risk register

Warley Place (pictured) in Essex has been placed on Historic England’s at-risk register due to ruined structures and uncovered architectural features

Urgent action is needed to fund and introduce a conservation plan to repair ruined structures, uncover hidden architectural features and help enhance the nature reserve.

More than 60 plants have been named in honour of either Warley Place or Willmott.

She transformed the grounds into one of the most celebrated gardens in the country after moving there with her parents in 1875.

The Restoration, which is a protected shipwreck lying off the Goodwin Sands near Deal in Kent, is among the other heritage sites which are now officially at risk.

It comes after a sandbank moved off the wreck and left it exposed.

Actor Simon Callow and former presenter Baroness Floella Benjamin are championing the revival of South London’s Grade II-listed Streatham Hill Theatre, which is at risk.

Repairs and conservation work are needed to bring the once lavish theatre-turned-bingo hall, which opened in 1929, back in to use.

Battersea Power Station, which was built from 1929 and had been on the at-risk register for 30 years, has been taken off the register. 

Streatham Hill Theatre in south London which opened in 1929 has been added to Historic England’s at risk register

The Streatham Hill Theatre in south London (pictured)  is in need of significant conservation and repair

After 30 years on the at-risk register, Battersea Power Station has been revamped with new retail, leisure and dining venues

The decommissioned power station, which became vacant in 1983, once supplied one fifth of London’s electricity

Simon Murphy, chief executive officer at the Battersea Power Station Development Company, said he was ‘delighted’ that ‘several years of careful and complex restoration’ had resulted in the site’s removal from the register

In 2008, Chelsea F.C. was reported to be considering moving to a new purpose built stadium at Battersea Power Station

 The power station itself will be home to 253 apartments, a 1,400-capacity events space, 40,000 sq ft co-working office space from No18 and Apple’s new 500,000 sq ft London Campus in the Boiler House.

The once derelict station which became vacant by 1983 has been revamped with new retail, leisure and dining venues alongside housing and office space at the site which supplied one fifth of London’s electricity.

In 2008, Chelsea F.C. was reported to be considering moving to a new purpose built stadium at Battersea Power Station. 

The arena was to hold between 65,000 and 75,000 fans and feature a retractable roof. 

The proposals were designed by HOK Sport, who had recently masterminded Wembley Stadium. However, the Chelsea F.C. scheme was seriously in doubt due to concerns for the preservation of the site and the collapse of the REO scheme in late November 2011

Simon Murphy, chief executive officer at the Battersea Power Station Development Company, said he was ‘delighted’ that ‘several years of careful and complex restoration’ had resulted in the site’s removal from the register. 

Plumpton Rocks in Harrogate, which was one of a collection of gardens across North Yorkshire that was painted by JMW Turner, has also been saved.

Plumpton Rocks in Harrogate, North Yorkshire, has been removed from Historic England’s at risk register

The gardens, which were famously painted by JMW Turner, was taken off the at-risk list after repairs had been made to the dam and the lake had been dredged

Lincoln Castle in Lincolnshire has been removed from Historic England’s at risk register following a £22m renovation

The silting of the lake and tree growth had threatened the site.

But the lake has been dredged, repairs have been made to the dam and work was done to manage the trees and vegetation growth.

Restoration work is also being carried out on the parkland. 

A £3.1 million repair project saved the 175ft Duke of Wellington monument, which now stands proudly in the Somerset landscape on the Blackdown Hills.

The monument is the world’s tallest three-sided obelisk and commemorates the duke following his victory at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.

It has endured funding shortfalls and been struck by lightning twice. 

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