The entrance to the Castle car park in Chester has moved from Grosvenor Road to Castle Street temporarily as work continues on one of the city's most historic and important buildings.
People intending to park will not be able to access the car park through the traditional gateway, or Propylaeum as it is formally named, until August this year when the £679,000 project to protect the massive sandstone structure ends.
The alternative entrance to the car park is via the traditional exit on Castle Street, adjacent to the Cheshire Military Museum .
The scheme of works, funded by a grant of £404,000 from Historic England, £200,000 from Cheshire West and Chester Council and £75,000 from WREN, include:
- Underpinning part of the building which has suffered from subsidence
- Waterproofing the roof structure to prevent further water penetration
- Extensive repairs to the central gateway
- Repairs, removal of vegetation and gentle cleaning of the stonework
- Improvements to the current rainwater drainage system
- Replacement of existing light fittings with more elegant and energy efficient fittings and removal of redundant cabling
- Cleaning, repair and repainting of gates and railings
- Pigeon deterrent measures
- More sympathetic surfacing around the building
- Interpretation signage
History of the Propylaeum
Work began on the Grade I listed structure in 1811 and was finished in 1815. The 200-year-old sandstone structure is a massive gateway in the Greek Doric order, flanked by two smaller pedimented lodges. It was designed by Chester-based architect Thomas Harrison.
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Extensive investigations, archaeological excavations and surveys were commissioned by the council to inform the programme of repairs and restoration for the structure.
The proposals have been designed in full by Ramboll Structural Engineers in consultation with Historic England. Scheduled Monument and Listed Building consent have been secured to implement the proposals.