Sudbury Gasworks, Derbyshire

Sudbury Gasworks, Derbyshire is a very rare example of a small scale village gasworks.

Built c1874 by George Devey, an architect known for his work on English country houses, it produced gas for Sudbury Hall and many houses in the village. The Gasworks was dismantled in the 1930s and quickly fell into disrepair.

It was used by a local farrier and then a potter but had soon fallen into a state of disrepair. It is a Grade II listed building and was included on the heritage at risk register.

In 2014 a group of local people formed Sudbury Gasworks Restoration Trust who by sheer hard work manage to secure a £1.6m grant funding by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Restoration work start just under a year ago and the results are stunning. This is now a building and facility that will serve a very wide section of the community, not just a handful of specialist interest individuals.

This is a true conservation project that has preserved and conserved the essence of the buildings past history and lovingly combined it with its new use. It is so refreshing to see areas where there was no restoration work undertaken to restore objects or heritage asset back to their original state. The blacksmiths files sticking in the roof trusses are a testament to it past use. Looking around, you can see that some items have not been painted. Thus, preserving the patina of age, the craftsmanship, the archaeological interest and the plain sense of connection with the past through the age of the materials.

The carful and professional conservation work allows the building to tell its story of its own past, allowing the visitor to explore and look back in time.


About Morturn

Historian – Photographer – Filmmaker Retired construction professional with a passion for public, social and industrial history. I believe in equality, dignity and integrity for all. Don’t like people who try to belittle the ambitions of others. I am of the opinion that my now life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I live.
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