COMMITTEE            Executive

DATE                 30 September 2005

SUBJECT              Building Preservation Trusts in Greater Manchester

REPORT OF            Roger Ellis, Chief Executive, Rochdale MBC


1.1    This report seeks the Executive’s approval to a joint proposal from the
       Heritage Trust for the North West and the Ancoats Building Preservation
       Trust. The proposal is for a joint study of the potential for future
       Buildings Preservation Trust activity in the sub-region. The outcome of
       the study would enable AGMA to decide whether to support such activity in
       the future and to assess potential delivery structures. The cost of the
       proposed study would be £35,255, to be shared 50% by English Heritage
       and 50% (ie £17,627.50) by AGMA.


2.1    The Executive is asked to agree to support the proposed study.


3.1    On 26th November 2004, following a request from the Heritage Trust for
       the North West (HTNW), I agreed to act as the link between the Trust and
       the AGMA Chief Executives. I met representatives of the Trust on 6
       January 2005.

32.    The Trust were seeking financial support from AGMA, estimated to be
       £50,000 per annum, to develop their capacity to extend their work within
       Greater Manchester.

3.3    Shortly afterwards I received a similar approach from the Ancoats
       Buildings Preservation Trust, who wanted a similar conversation about
       possible future AGMA support for their activity. This put AGMA in the
       potentially difficult position of having two “rival” trusts competing for
       AGMA’s support.


4.1   As a result I met Henry Owen-John, Regional Director of English Heritage,
      to discuss a possible way forward.

4.2   We agreed that before AGMA could take a view on which, if either, of the
      requests for support we should support, a review of the future potential
      for Building Preservation Trust activity is needed. Such a review would
      need to take account of:

         The number and scale of potential projects, both in relation to
          individual historic buildings and neighbourhoods;
         The availability of funding for projects;
         The relevant strategies for the sub-region.

4.3   Henry agreed that English Heritage would pay 50% of the cost of such a
      review. We also agreed that, whilst we could choose to commission one
      or other of the Trusts to carry out the review (or indeed someone else
      such as a consultancy), it would be preferable to ask the two Trusts to
      work in partnership on this. In that way we could capture the knowledge
      and experience of the two Trusts and promote better working relationships
      between them.


5.1   After a number of discussion, the attached joint proposal has been
      received from the two Trusts. English Heritage have confirmed that they
      will provide 50% of the £35,255 funding required. In discussions with the
      Head of the Policy & Research Unit he believes that the balance of 50%
      (£17,627.50) can be funded from the Policy Unit’s budget for 2005/6 ,
      using balances transferrd from former Greater Manchester Research, as
      reported in Appendix G to the 2004/5 AGMA Units outturn report to the
      Executive on 26 August 2005 (minute 31/05).

5.2   The project would require a Steering Group. I would be happy to join that
      Group but would welcome the addition of a Conservation Officer (or
      similar) with technical knowledge and expertise from another authority.


6.1   I think the joint proposal, which has been quite challenging for the two
      Trusts to prepare, should be supported by AGMA as a way of developing a
      sound, evidence base for future decisions on support for Buildings
      Preservation Trust activity. The proposal was considered by the AGMA
      Chief Executives Group on 26 August 2005 and has their support.

Roger Ellis
Chief Executive
Rochdale MBC
15 September 2005
The potential for Building Preservation Trust activity in
Greater Manchester
A joint proposal by Ancoats Buildings Preservation Trust and Heritage Trust for the North

July 2005
Revised KD 25.07.05

1.0    Introduction

1.1    This is a joint proposal from Ancoats Buildings Preservation Trust (ABPT) and Heritage
       Trust for the North West (HTNW) for undertaking a study to examine the potential for
       Building Preservation Trust (BPT) activity in Greater Manchester. The proposal has been
       instigated by Henry Owen-John of English Heritage North West and Roger Ellis of
       Rochdale Borough Council & the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities.

1.2    Both Building Preservation Trusts (BPTs) are Registered Charities and registered with the
       Architectural Heritage Fund in London, which lends money at competitive rates to BPTs
       and awards small grants for project development.

1.3    ABPT is based in Ancoats, Manchester; HTNW at Barrowford, North East Lancashire.

1.4    BPTs are often described as ‘developers of last resort’, as primarily they take on building
       projects that are not viable for the private sector.

1.5    BPTs often kick start wider environmental improvements and regeneration.

1.6    BPTs can access charitable and public funding otherwise unavailable to local authorities
       and private companies. BPT applications are welcomed by the Heritage Lottery Fund,
       which has special conditions that enable the Fund to contribute towards the ‘conservation
       deficit’ in BPT projects, even if the asset in which investment is made is subsequently sold.

2.0    Purpose of Study

2.1    The purpose of the study is two-fold:
       (a) To review the condition, status and potential of the Grade I and II* Buildings at Risk in
            Greater Manchester and identify those where the market is likely to find a solution
            and those where the involvement of the BPT would provide the best way forward.
       (b) To review approximately ten selected ‘neighbourhoods’ across Greater Manchester
            that demonstrate the potential for BPT activity and show how such heritage-led
            regeneration might complement the economic strategies of the boroughs and wider

3.0    Delivery

3.1 This will be a collaborative project between the two BPTs, each doing part of the work, with
    some input from external consultants, including an architect, chartered surveyor, structural
    engineer, and regeneration specialists. The work will be undertaken chiefly by the Trust
    Directors of the two organisations, and biographical details for these individuals are

3.2 The two BPTs will work together under Heads of Agreement that will set out respective

3.3 It is suggested that a Project Steering Group is established to whom the Trusts and
    consultants will report. Membership of this group may include a representative from English
    Heritage and the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities.

3.4 One Trust (to be nominated by the Steering Group) will act as a finance manager for the

       Time Frame
3.5 The project will commence on 1 October 2005 or as soon after that date as possible,
    depending on the availability of funding.

3.6 The aim will be to complete the study within six months i.e. by 31 March 2006, with a first draft
    to be completed by 31 January 2006.

        Total Fee
3.7 The estimated fee for undertaking the study is £32,255 + VAT and the two Trusts anticipate
    that AGMA and English Heritage will share these costs.

3.8 The attached chart shows the breakdown of the costs involved for each part of the study and
    for each Trust.

3.9 The BPTs propose a fee of £450 + VAT per day for the work undertaken by the Directors of
    the two Trusts and by the consultants.

3.10    A management fee of 10% is charged for the administration costs of each BPT.

4.0     Methodology

4.1     The study is to have two parts:
        a) A review of the condition, status and potential of up to 25 of the 36 Grade 1 and Grade
              2* listed buildings in Greater Manchester that are included on English Heritage’s
              2004 Buildings at Risk register. See section 4.2 below.
        b) A review of approximately ten carefully selected ‘neighbourhoods’ across Greater
              Manchester that demonstrate the potential for BPT activity on an area-wide
              regeneration basis. See section 4.3 below.
        NB: At this stage it is not possible to determine whether any of the neighbourhoods to be
        explored under part (b) of the study will include buildings at risk reviewed in part (a). This
        is not a determining factor in selecting the neighbourhoods to be studied.

4.2 Buildings at Risk

4.2.1   After an initial discussion and information-sharing session, Heritage Trust for the North
        West will lead on this part of the study.
4.2.2   A standard proforma check sheet will be developed for the assessment of each BAR
        register entry, with criteria including ownership and contact details, occupancy / vacancy,
        building condition, extant consents, statutory notices served, special planning status (e.g.
        within a conservation area; subject to any Local Authority policies etc).
4.2.3   Desktop research and telephone consultations with local authority conservation officers,
        English Heritage and others will sift out those buildings on the register that already have a
        regeneration solution or whose problems appear insurmountable.
4.2.4   A maximum of 25 buildings will be visited, to assist in the completion of the check sheets
        and assessment of the potential for possible BPT projects
4.2.5   Each visited building will be photographed and a superficial assessment of condition
        undertaken by the BPT. Suggestions of possible end uses will also be made (e.g.
        ‘suitable only for on-going residential use’, or ‘could be converted to office uses’).
4.2.6   For each property displaying BPT project potential (i.e. resolvable ownership issues,
        salvageable condition and end use potential), a rudimentary structural and fabric condition

        survey will be undertaken (subject to access arrangements). It is estimated that between
        six and ten buildings will fall into this category.
4.2.7   HTNW will obtain market / viability advice from appropriately qualified and experienced
        consultants (architect / structural engineer / chartered surveyor) in respect of the
        ‘repairability’ of the buildings and their economic potential depending on a range of
        possible end uses, configurations and enabling development opportunities.
4.2.8   Although it will be very difficult to undertake a cost versus end value assessment at this
        stage, the study will endeavour to evaluate the relative viability of proposals for each short-
        listed building at risk in the present economic climate and prioritise the buildings according
        to condition and opportunity.
4.2.9   Up to 9 days’ total allowance has been allowed for consultants’ input in the study fee
        proposal, based on up to three consultants visiting two or three properties per day.
        Additionally HTNW estimates that 10 days’ BPT time will be required for the Buildings at
        Risk review.

4.3     Neighbourhood evaluation

4.3.1   ABPT will lead on this part of the study, with a ‘division of labour’ between ABPT and
        HTNW for the desktop research and initial assessment.
4.3.2   It is suggested that the study identifies one neighbourhood in each of the ten Greater
        Manchester authority areas, with a range of neighbourhood types: urban quarters,
        suburban or village locations, rural hamlets etc.

        Desktop research and initial assessment
4.3.3   For the initial research, the boroughs will be divided between the two BPTs. Telephone
        consultations with English Heritage, local authority conservation officers, economic
        regeneration officers, town centre managers etc will assist in the identification of two or
        three high priority neighbourhoods in each borough and in developing an overview of local
        economic regeneration and planning & development issues. These neighbourhoods are
        likely to be areas with a high concentration of historic buildings, problems of vacancy,
        neglect, planning blight or development pressure etc.
4.3.4   A proforma check sheet will be developed for the assessment of potential
        neighbourhoods. Criteria for the physical environment assessment may be based on
        those used by the Heritage Lottery Fund for the evaluation of Townscape Heritage
        Initiative proposals – conservation area status and area boundaries; number of listed
        buildings; number of buildings at risk; identification of ‘key heritage buildings’ whose
        current condition detracts from the quality of the area; vacancy levels, especially at upper
        floors; condition of shop fronts or principle street frontages; condition of street finishes and
        the public realm generally etc.
4.3.5   A day or two days will then be spent by the BPT officers visiting between two and four
        neighbourhoods together. These will include different neighbourhood types (e.g. ‘urban’
        and ‘rural’). These initial visits will enable pilot assessments to be carried out and facilitate
        development of the proforma check sheet as necessary, as well as helping to identify the
        critical criteria that must be represented in each area in order for it to have BPT
        involvement potential.
4.3.6   The steering group will be consulted following the pilot assessment and the methodology
        refined as necessary in accordance with discussions. The group will agree for example,
        whether the study should focus on particular neighbourhood types or geographical areas
        and how the remaining assessments will be undertaken by the trusts. It may be necessary
        for two or three neighbourhoods to be visited in each borough before settling on the one
        neighbourhood to be featured in the study.
4.3.7   Assessments will be supported by photographic and map information (new and historic).
        Local Authority officers will be asked to assist in the identification and sourcing of suitable
        illustrative material.

         Strategic fit
4.3.8    One of the aims of the study is to demonstrate how BPT conservation projects can
         contribute to wider regeneration objectives. It will therefore be necessary to undertake a
         desktop review of current regional and local strategies such as:
          The Northern Way Business Plan & the Manchester City Region Development
          The Northwest Development Agency’s Regional Economic Strategy
          The Northwest Development Agency’s Tourism Vision for England’s Northwest
          Cultural Consortium England’s Northwest’s Cultural Strategy
          ODPM’s Strategy for Sustainable Communities
          English Heritage’s Planning & Development in the Historic Environment Charter
          Borough-level Cultural Strategies, Regeneration & Tourism Strategies etc.
         A specialist regeneration consultant will be involved in undertaking this desktop research.

         Evaluation and possible conclusions
4.3.9    Having identified one neighbourhood in each borough and undertaken the physical
         environment assessment described in 4.3.5 above, it will be necessary to evaluate the
         BPT project potential (a) on the basis of heritage-led regeneration need / potential and (b)
         in terms of economic regeneration potential and strategic fit.
4.3.10   The evaluation may identify possible building projects that might be suitable for a BPT,
         operating as a ‘developer of last resort’, to undertake within each neighbourhood, or other
         opportunities for a BPT to assist the local authority in bringing forward a regeneration
         programme that fits local, regional and national strategies and funding priorities within a
         conservation context.
4.3.11   The specialist regeneration consultant will be engaged to assist with the ‘strategic fit’
         evaluation. In total six days of a consultant’s time have been allowed for input into the
4.3.12   It should be noted that the evaluation will not include an assessment of the viability of
         possible building projects, even to the level proposed for the buildings at risk evaluation in
         section 4.2.7 above. It will be necessary to undertake further feasibility / viability studies at
         a later stage involving appropriately qualified consultants.
4.3.13   ‘Solutions’ to be identified in the study conclusions may include:
             Area suitable for a Heritage Lottery Fund Townscape Heritage Initiative scheme
             Area within an SRB programme or NWDA priority area where, for example, community
              safety budgets might be used to provide capital for historic building stabilisation or
              enveloping, or funds made available for public realm improvements
             Area containing a particular building at risk that might be suitable for an HLF-funded
              project, acting as a catalyst to encourage private sector investment in the
              neighbourhood and thus wider regeneration
             Area needing a ‘Living over the Shop’ initiative or a shop front scheme
             Area with development pressures providing opportunities to secure private investment
              through section 106 agreements

5.0      Presentation of the study

5.1      HTNW’s in-house graphic design and production team will be used to produce standard
         data sheets for each building at risk (part a of the study) and each neighbourhood (part b),
         completed to include all the desktop researched information, site photographs, historic and
         current images and maps etc.
5.2      The study will be presented in two bound volumes (one for the Buildings at Risk review
         and one for the Neighbourhood study), in A4 colour format. A loose-leaf version will also
         be provided plus ten copies of the documents in pdf format on CD-Rom, for distribution to
         each of the Greater Manchester local authorities.

The potential for BPT activity in Greater
A joint proposal by Ancoats Buildings Preservation Trust and Heritage Trust for the North West

Fee proposal - as at 25 July 2005

                                                                           days   BPTs    Consultants Total fee
a) Buildings at Risk Review                                                        £          £          £
Desktop research                                                           2.5      1,100
HTNW site visits                                                           10       4,500
HTNW-managed consultants                                                    9           0       4,050
Disbursements, inc travel, photography & map reproduction etc                         150
                                                                Subtotal   21.5     5,750           4,050      9,800
Trusts' management fee @ 10%                                                                                     980
                                                                                                Total for     10,780
                                                                                                 part (a)

b) Neighbourhood review
HTNW desktop research                                                       3       1,350
ABPT desktop research                                                       3       1,350
HTNW & ABPT develop assessment proforma                                     1         450
Pilot site visits                                                           4       1,800
BPT neighbourhood assessments                                              20       9,000
Regeneration consultant's input                                             6           0           2,700
Development of conclusions                                                  2         900
Writing up / amendments                                                     2         900
Design & reproduction (HTNW in-house)                                               3,000
Disbursements, inc travel & photography etc                                           400
Disbursements, allowance for reproduction of historic images & maps                   400
                                                               Subtotal    41      19,550           2,700     22,250
Trusts' management fee @ 10%                                                                                   2,225
                                                                                                Total for     24,475
                                                                                                 part (b)

                                                                                             Grand total     £35,255
                                                                                                for study
                                                                                            parts (a) and


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