A return to period shop frontages for two Newark town centre businesses

Posted on: Monday, March 13, 2023

Visitors to Newark’s town centre will soon be taken back to the early 20th century as two Grade II listed buildings are to be transformed thanks to funding from Historic England and Newark and Sherwood District Council.

Flossie & Boo at 19 Market Place and Travail Employment Group at 1 Appleton Gate have both had planning applications approved to replace the frontage with a more historically sympathetic approach. Both buildings are located within Newark’s Conservation Area boundary, which was originally designated in 1968 and was reviewed and extended in November 2022.

The Flossie and Boo proposals will restore the existing shop front to a more traditional and bold design, which has hints of the art deco movement, using features from when the premises was owned by G.H Porter Provisions a century ago. In an almost authentic replica, planned by Guy Taylor Associates of Newark, gold/bronze painted signage on a black painted timber fascia panel will be installed alongside dark green glazed Victorian style bricks for the stall riser. The building has been prioritised through the scheme due to its high impact location on the Market Place and close proximity to the Grade I listed St Mary Magdalene’s Church.

Travail Employment Group is a late-Georgian property that has been much altered over time. The scheme, designed by architectural firm Smith & Roper, will see a hand painted sign installed and other features to preserve its special architectural and historic interest, improving its appearance on a key gateway to the Market Place at the corner of Bridge Street with Appleton Gate. The design will reference the appearance of the building in the 1940s, when it was part of the Knight Dickens (Wine & Spirit and Grocers) shop.

Work has been enabled thanks to Newark and Sherwood District Council securing £275,000 of funding from Historic England’s High Streets Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ) scheme, which was established to promote the vitality of town centres by protecting, enhancing and celebrating heritage. The projects are being funded through this investment, contributions from the District Council and building owners.

Councillor Rhona Holloway, Portfolio Holder for Economic Development and Visitors at Newark and Sherwood District Council, said: “These proposals will help to breathe new life into Newark’s beautiful market square, restoring character to buildings that are rich in heritage.

“One of the main goals of Newark’s High Streets Heritage Action Zone project is to improve the appearance of listed buildings and their immediate neighbourhoods, bringing a positive change to the ambience of the town centre.

“We are delighted with the positive response from the owners who are fully on board to help improve their premises’ character and condition. When work is complete, they will have a positive impact on the town centre, raising aspirations and making Newark a more attractive place to live in and visit.”

The District Council continues to work with the applicants, architects and Historic England to ensure all the necessary details are in place to begin work. It is hoped that work will begin before the end of March.

A Historic England spokesperson said: “We are delighted to see work start on the Newark shopfront scheme: it is an exciting step in the heritage led regeneration of Newark, and testament to the excellent work carried out by colleagues in the town.

“The works will not only enhance these wonderful historic buildings but will also enhance the surrounding townscape for the benefit of all – from residents to visitors. We are thrilled to see Newark’s High Street Heritage Action Zone have a such a striking and positive impact on the ground.”

Building owners within the Newark HSHAZ boundary that wish to carry out external repair or refurbishment work can complete an expression of interest form on the District Council website: https://www.newark-sherwooddc.gov.uk/haz/.

In addition to regenerating historic buildings, the HSHAZ has also involved engaging local communities through art and cultural projects. As part of the scheme, Newark Creates, a three-year cultural programme led by Newark Cultural Consortium, was set up to celebrate Newark's heritage and arts organisations through a series of exciting events and activities for all ages. Find out more: http://www.newarkcreates.co.uk/.