Nottingham Castle Trust has been selected as the ‘Preferred Partner Concessionaire’ for the future management and operation of Nottingham Castle, it can be announced. It is the latest important step on the journey towards the transformation of Nottingham Castle into a world-class visitor destination.
A tender process was conducted earlier this year to find a suitable organisation to manage the future running of Nottingham Castle as a visitor destination. While Nottingham Castle Trust has not yet been fully appointed to become operator of Nottingham Castle, it will as ‘Preferred Partner Concessionaire’ now be involved in more detailed formal negotiations with the City Council on the future operation of the Castle, subject to the required HLF funding being secured.
Nottingham Castle Trust is an independent, non-profit organisation which is currently leading work to raise £3m in funds towards the £24m Nottingham Castle transformation. The Castle Trust is led by Chair, Ted Cantle, with Heather Mayfield as CEO.
Currently Nottingham City Council runs Nottingham Castle and will shortly submit the stage 2 funding application to the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to secure the final £13m of funding for the planned transformation of Nottingham Castle. Proposals for the transformation include a new Robin Hood gallery, a Rebellion gallery, galleries celebrating the Power of Art and Making (including Nottingham’s famous lace industry), a new visitor centre and improved access to the caves. A funding decision from the HLF is expected in November this year. If given the go ahead, the project will be the most significant heritage regeneration project in England.
Work is anticipated to begin on site in 2017, with the transformed Castle re-opening to the public in early 2020.
Councillor Dave Trimble, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture, said: “This is a really positive step forward for the transformation of Nottingham Castle. The Nottingham Castle Trust has amply demonstrated their passion and commitment to the Castle project, and the wider regeneration of that area of the city. We look forward to working with them over coming months as this exciting project progresses.”