PICTURES: End in sight for Lincoln Castle restoration
The final phase of a major restoration project has begun at Lincoln Castle.
The refurbishment of the heritage visitor attraction will see improvements made to the old Georgian and Victorian prison buildings and the construction of a new underground vault which will be used to display ancient documents the Magna Carta and the Charter of the Forest - the only location in the world to house both.
Other changes will include the creation of a cinema auditorium to tell the story of the Magna Carta, the refurbishment of the historic East Wing staircase, improved access to the exhibition area, new visitor facilities and better disabled access.
Councillor Nick Worth, Lincolnshire County Council's executive member for heritage, said:
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“This is a real milestone moment for the project. The castle is the only place in the world where Magna Carta and the Charter of the Forest can be seen together, and this phase of the improvements will give them the home they deserve. This will make the castle an attraction of international importance, bringing in many more visitors from near and far. And that's good news for the local economy."
The work has been contracted to Robert Woodhead Ltd, the firm which also built the new Heritage Skills Centre, the first new building in the castle's grounds for 150 years.
Simon Butler from Woodhead Heritage added:
“We are very pleased and excited to have won the fourth and latest project at Lincoln Castle as this type of project is very rare. The prison buildings are Grade II listed and will require careful conservation; at the same time, we want to ensure the final buildings offer a world-class visitor experience.”
Lincoln Castle will remain open to the public throughout the work, which is due to be completed in time to celebrate the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta in 2015.
For further information on the all the improvements happening at the castle, visit www.lincolnshire.gov.uk/historiclincoln.