MP Steve Barclay commends 'fantastic work' of volunteers in rejuvenating 'hidden gem' Wisbech Castle

PUBLISHED: 16:33 08 June 2018

Mayor of Wisbech Councillor Steve Tierney showing MP Steve Barclay the work that is being carried out at Wisbech Castle.

Mayor of Wisbech Councillor Steve Tierney showing MP Steve Barclay the work that is being carried out at Wisbech Castle.

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MP Steve Barclay commended the 'fantastic work' of a team of volunteers to repair and rejuvenate Wisbech Castle, which he describes as "a hidden gem at the heart of the town for many years".

MP Steve Barclay commends ‘fantastic work’ of volunteers rejuvenating ‘hidden gem’ Wisbech Castle
MP Steve Barclay commends ‘fantastic work’ of volunteers rejuvenating ‘hidden gem’ Wisbech Castle

Earlier this year the castle was transferred to Wisbech Town Council on a long lease with a peppercorn rent along with a £150,000 loan from the county council,

Repayable over 25 years, the money was awarded so that repairs and improvements could be carried out.

In March, Wisbech town councillors were criticised of being clueless by trying to save the historic castle, with Geoffrey Wilkinson, the former county council castle manager, saying “they don’t have the imagination, the money or the expertise”.

MP Steve Barclay commends ‘fantastic work’ of volunteers rejuvenating ‘hidden gem’ Wisbech Castle
MP Steve Barclay commends ‘fantastic work’ of volunteers rejuvenating ‘hidden gem’ Wisbech Castle

Mr Barclay said: “Steve Tierney and a team of more than 20 volunteers are working wonders on the historic site, repairing restoring and rejuvenating this historic building and its gardens,” he said.

“The team have exciting plans to return the castle to being at the heart of community life, with a string of local community groups now keen to use its characterful rooms and gorgeous, tranquil walled gardens.

“Visiting the castle and seeing what the team have already achieved, and hearing their plans for the future, made this one of the best visits I have been on all year.

MP Steve Barclay commends ‘fantastic work’ of volunteers rejuvenating ‘hidden gem’ Wisbech Castle
MP Steve Barclay commends ‘fantastic work’ of volunteers rejuvenating ‘hidden gem’ Wisbech Castle

“The sense of a can-do attitude was uplifting and I think it will be a real asset to the town once complete.

“Well done to the local team of volunteers for all their hard work, and to all the local people who have donated tools and equipment in recent weeks.”

Earlier this week Cllr Tierney said one plan being considered is to have a public toilet with full disability function on the side of the pumphouse at the back of the castle.

MP Steve Barclay commends ‘fantastic work’ of volunteers rejuvenating ‘hidden gem’ Wisbech Castle
MP Steve Barclay commends ‘fantastic work’ of volunteers rejuvenating ‘hidden gem’ Wisbech Castle

He said it needs to get full approval but added that this would be a “additional free public toilet right in the middle of town”.

Click here to watch an interview about Wisbech Castle in 1963.

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