Bid for Lotto cash to revamp Pump Room Gardens in Leamington gets closer

The bandstand in Pump Room Gardens.
The bandstand in Pump Room Gardens.

The next stage in the £1 million project to revamp the Pump Room Gardens has been reached with planning permission being sought to demolish the bandstand.

But it won’t be lost for ever – it will be taken down, repaired and reassembled to make the Grade II-listed cast iron bandstand the focal point of the park.

Formal planning permission has to be granted by Warwick District Council for the work as part of the bid to get funding from the Lottery Heritage Fund.

Architects have drawn up plans to restore the octagonal bandstand, consultants have prepared designs for the park’s restoration and drainage engineers brought in to help solve waterlogging that has been a problem for many years.

Archie Pitts, chairman of the Friends of the Pump Room Gardens, which has worked with the district council to restore the park and bid for Lotto cash, said he hoped the formal bid for Heritage Lottery funding will be made in August.

He said: “The overall aim is to bring the gardens back to their heyday, which was in the early 1900s.”

Townspeople were asked their views on what improvements they would like to see and the community activities to be held there, as well as linking activities in the art gallery and library with the park.

The friends group also spoke to young people in
the town, including youth clubs, about their views on the future use of the bandstand and park.

Mr Pitts added: “There’s a place for all sections of the community. The young people go there (the bandstand) to meet their friends.

“They want it as a facility that they can use and respect – that’s the majority. We all know that when there’s vandalism and litter it encourages more – that’s one of the reasons the youngsters and us want it restored.”