The West Midlands Historic Buildings Trust (WMHBT)
The WMHBT and the WBPT are run by a Management Committee made up of specialists in the field of building conservation. These individuals serve as Trustees and give their time, on a volunatry basis to support the activities of the Trusts.
The WMHBT's projects were made possible by tremendous local community and local authority support and financial assistance from several sources, includingp rimarily the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Architectural Heritage Fund.
19-20 High Street, Kinver, South Staffordshire
19 - 20 High Street, Kinver is a timber-frame building, listed grade II. In the Staffordshire volume of ‘The Buildings of England’ series, the late Nikolaus Pevsner states that in Kinver High Street the best houses are numbers 17-20.
When the WMHBT took the building over it was in a dangerous condition, with parts close to collapse. By that stage no-one was prepared to take up the arrears of maintenance because it would have cost more than the market value to put it right. As a result of the WMHBT project, 19-20 High Street has been transformed into a comfortable four-bedroom home and is now occupied by new owners.
The high standards of the work were recognised by two awards: "The Carpenters' Award" presented by English Heritage in recognition of "the sensitivity of approach and excellence of craftsmanship"; and a “mention” by the Civic Trust for its "worthy contribution to the community".
The Victorian, the magazine produced by the Victorian Society, published an article about the work of the West Midlands Historic Buildings Trust in July 2009.Download it in pdf format (258kb)
The Harris & Pearson Office Building, Brierley Hill
This grade II listed office building was built as a living showcase by the former Harris & Pearson Company, firebrick manufacturers, in Brettell Lane, Brierley Hill, West Midlands. The building had been unoccupied for 13 years and was in a derelict state when acquired by the WMHBT, with the costs of repair again being in excess of market value.
Conservation building work to convert the building for modern-day use as commercial offices commenced in April 2004 and was completed in January 2005. The building was sold on completion and has been returned to use as prestigious offices.
The project was a regional finalist in the RICS Awards 2006, a national finalist in the Brick Awards 2006, and was awarded a “commendation” in the 2006 Civic Trust awards.
More information about this building is available on the Harris & Pearson Office Building web site.
The Lye and Wollescote Cemetery Chapels
The Lye and Wollescote Cemetery Chapels, now known as the Thomas Robinson Building, in Cemetery Road, Lye is a Grade II listed building in recognition of its architectural and historical importance as part of the UK's national heritage. It is a rare surviving example of a cemetery chapel designed to incorporate two chapels within a single building.
The associated cemetery continues in use but the nonconformist chapel was closed in the 1970s and the Church of England chapel closed following a fire in 1993 which caused minor damage to the interior.
This historically important building was at risk until the WMHBT managed the project to refurbish the building which was completed in March 2016. It is now in use, in a secular capacity, as a registration office.
More information about this project is available on the Lye and wollescote Cemetery Chapels web site.