The Discovery Project

  • People - a new welcome centre and facilities for our volunteers
  • Heritage - promoting the estate's diverse history and natural heritage
  • Landscapes - restoring features & vistas, improving drainage 

ABOUT THE DISCOVERY PROJECT

Subject to a £1.9 million grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, we plan to restore our historical features, re-instate landscapes that have been lost over time and enhance our grounds.

Visitors will enjoy improved access to the fascinating history of the Estate through interactive displays installed around the site, and at a new welcome centre, where they will also discover what we have available for them to see and do at the Country Park.

The grant will additionally allow us to support the local community by offering opportunities for people to develop new skills and knowledge, with better access to training and education, focusing on the natural environment. 

The Heritage Lottery funding bid will be made in Autumn 2019.

The Funding Bid

Our Heritage

News Updates

People, Heritage & Landscapes

Our three main themes

Exciting plans to improve the Estate for visitors, volunteers and the local community

People – visitors and volunteers

As part of the project, it is our plan to convert the existing car park toilet block into a new welcome centre, to provide a central point for visitors to access information about our services, events and facilities. There will also the opportunity to introduce the natural and built heritage of the site with interactive interpretation displays.

As part of that we were excited to work with Imagemakers Interpretive Design & Consultancy to develop ideas for a range of interpretation and information features to help people find their way around and tell the Park’s many stories. The concept designs are described in our pdf presentation; they explain the proposals we worked up with Imagemakers and presented to park visitors from 12th-14th April 2019 and to website visitors 15th April-3rd May. In June Planning Permission was granted for the exciting Welcome Centre proposals [details here]. 

Our volunteer support continues to grow but our existing facilities are not able to provide the space during breaks needed for everyone. We are incredibly fortunate to have the support of many wonderful volunteers and we would like to offer them comfortable facilities to enjoy during breaks with improved volunteer facilities.

New training and learning opportunities will be created for our volunteers and the local community. Working in partnership with local organisations, we will provide increased access to skills development and work experience throughout the Country Park, introducing our heritage to more people and strengthening our ties with young people.

Heritage

Our project will allow us to introduce our heritage to all of our visitors by adding new high quality interpretation throughout the site, creating the opportunity for visitors to understand the Estate’s diverse history and further extend the story of the local area.

Upton Country Park has a unique harbour-side setting and hosts stunning views of the Holes Bay Nature Park, consisting of a mosaic of wetland and mudflats. The Discovery Project will allow us to introduce a bird hide on our shoreline and provide more people with the opportunity to learn about and enjoy the natural heritage throughout the Country Park.

Landscapes

Through the Project, we will re-instate historical pathways and create a new network of paths from the back lawn, to link Upton House to the wider Estate. Views down to the shoreline have been lost over time but with the effective management of trees and planting, our project will re-introduce three vistas from Upton House and Walled Garden down to Holes Bay Nature Park, to highlight our shoreline location with the wider Country Park and restoring the historic pleasure grounds.

It is essential to complete vital infrastructure maintenance and protect our listed site from further deterioration. Our research has shown that there is a considerable problem with drainage particularly from the back lawn, resulting in waterlogged grounds and pathways. An improved drainage system will help to rectify this problem. It is our plan to restore historic features and complete essential repair work to our Stable Yard area, to provide improved access to our Walled Garden.

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