Council bid to restore facilities in Boultham Park

Boultham Park, a Grade II listed park in Lincoln, could secure £2.7 million in funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund in a joint bid between the city council and Linkage Community Trust.

The City of Lincoln Council’s Executive Committee will vote next week to decide if it wishes to adopt a new Conservation Plan for Boultham Park.

This funding would allow the conservation plan to be carried out, meaning heritage features would be restored and new facilities added.

The initial stage of the conservation Plan adopted by the council was approved by HLF in 2011, which led to a few improvements to the park. However, HLF wanted the new plans to reflect the story of Boultham Park more.

“The park was part of the Ellison family’s Boultham estate, which they owned from the 1830s until Lincoln Corporation bought the land in 1929 — it was this company which transformed it into a public park. The house was removed from the park in the 1950s, so only the base remains in the park.

Better design and facilities

If funding is secured, the park will get better footpaths, signage, lighting, toilets and a café to make the space more accessible for local residents.”

The fountain will also be restored, with a sundial built on top of the original base, and the bandstand improved.

Linkage Community Trust want to restore the stable block and transform it into a café, greenhouse and education centre with storage space for the park’s archives.

The greenhouse would be used as a base for NVQ studies in horticulture too.

An interpretation of the original house will be laid out on the park, to help visitors imagine the grandeur of the Ellison home.

Trees will also be rearranged and added to reflect the original 1830s landscape, including some of the changes Lincoln Corporation made too.

The lake’s water quality would also be improved, to enhance the beauty of the park for visitors and the park’s ecology — the site is of Nature Conservation Importance by Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust.

If approved, the outcome of the bid will be known between June and July, and work would begin in the park in spring 2014, taking two years to complete.

Community Services Manager, Caroline Pritchard said: ““The park is looking tired but it is still valued and well used by local people. But it has become run down and suffered from a lack of investment and we are at risk of losing its remaining heritage features.”

“We hope that the careful restoration of key features, along with interpretation and information to help tell the story of the Boultham estate, the park and the Ellisons, will make people appreciate the fascinating history of this part of Lincoln,”” said Caroline, who added that the hall and park’s past had seen it used as a convalescence home in World War 1 and the grounds cultivated as part of the Dig for Victory campaign in the second global conflict.

The Executive Committee will decide if it wishes to support the bid on February 18.