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Green light for CCTV cameras at Ayscoughfee Hall Museum and Spalding War Memorial renovations





CCTV cameras will be protecting a museum and a ‘neglected’ war memorial as councillors vow that crime will not be tolerated.

Concerns have been raised about the Grade I listed Edwin Lutyens War Memorial in Spalding’s Ayscoughfee Hall and Gardens after it had lost its masonry but restoration work will now be going ahead after getting the thumbs up from South Holland District Council’s planning committee.

The committee – which has also approved an application to install CCTV cameras on the Churchgate museum – has given the green light to install a French drain to move sitting water away from the monument.

An aerial shot of Spalding War Memorial in Ayscoughfee Gardens PHOTO: SOUTH HOLLAND DISTRCT COUNCIL
An aerial shot of Spalding War Memorial in Ayscoughfee Gardens PHOTO: SOUTH HOLLAND DISTRCT COUNCIL

At Wednesday’s meeting, Coun Bryan Alcock said: “We welcome the work being done to preserve it.

“We must not forget that this authority, and collectively all of us, have been neglecting it.”

Conservation and heritage portfolio holder Coun Liz Sneath said the improvement work will ensure the war memorial is around for another 100 years.

Coun Bryan Alcock
Coun Bryan Alcock

She said: “We now have the opportunity to show how much we love and cherish the Lutyens war memorial.”

Fellow cabinet member Coun Paul Redgate told the meeting that it was important to recognise and ‘take care of our heritage’.

He said: “This is the jewel in our crown so it is important that we get this right.”

Plaster has fallen from the listed Spalding War Memorial in Ayscoughfee Gardens
Plaster has fallen from the listed Spalding War Memorial in Ayscoughfee Gardens

Public protection portfolio holder Coun Anthony Casson also echoed those sentiments. He said: “We have been talking about this for many years so it is about time it was done.”

Deputy leader of the council, Coun Gary Taylor, said that Ayscoughfee had been important to people during the pandemic and the spotlight will be on this area at Remembrance Day.

Coun Jack Tyrrell, Environmental Services portfolio holder, questioned if a French drain was the right method as he was concerned about having water around the foundations and suggested having a channel to the pond.

Ayscoughfee Hall Museum
Ayscoughfee Hall Museum

Committee chairman James Avery: “This is a wonderful facility in Ayscoughfee but I think the most important aspect is the names that appear on there. “

The council has also received funding to install CCTV camera on the 15th century building to help provide additional security for the valuable Spalding Gentlemen’s Society collection. The society is due to be moving into the hall temporarily while its current home in Broad Street is improved.

Coun Taylor, who declared an interest as CCTV falls within his portfolio, said he supported the application and that cameras help to deter crime.

He said: “There is a minority that show no respect for public property and we must press that point that we will not accept anti-social behaviour or crime in this area.

“We must not allow the minority to spoil it for the majority.”

Coun Tyrrell said he had no problem with the application ‘as long as it keeps an eye on the war memorial’ while Coun Allan Beal said he would be happy for the camera to remain at Ayscoughfee.

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