Council set to agree new deal for Tettenhall Transport Heritage Centre

The future of Tettenhall Transport Heritage Centre is set to be secured, with councillors expected to approve a new 35-year lease for its home.

Tettenhall Transport Heritage Centre
Tettenhall Transport Heritage Centre

Members of Wolverhampton Council have said that a Community Asset Transfer on a peppercorn-rent basis will enable the charity, which is based off Henwood Road at the former Tettenhall Railway Station Goods Depot, to secure grant funding.

This would support the continued delivery of the museum and community involvement, as well as help develop its educational curriculum support around Wolverhampton’s role in the Second World War.

The museum was established in 2014 to inform and educate people on the transport and industrial heritage of the city and the building currently provides the base for the Tettenhall Engine Club, The Heritage Model Club and The Boulton Paul Association.

The centre is run by volunteers who link up with other local organisations and also undertake guided walks to highlight the important transport heritage of the neighbouring Smestow Valley.

The long-term lease by the City of Wolverhampton Council will provide the platform to further develop the property internally to improve accessibility to both floors of the museum and assist the charity with its bid to become an Accredited Museum with the West Midlands Museum Service.

The proposed Community Asset Transfer is due to be discussed at the council’s Cabinet Resources Panel on Wednesday.

Councillor Bhupinder Gakhal, cabinet member for city assets and housing, said: “We have been working closely with Tettenhall Transport Heritage Centre’s executive team to put this community asset transfer proposal together.

“It is an excellent example of a community-led organisation developing a surplus council asset and retaining it for use within the community.

“The full business case they have put forward means the long-term future of this popular centre is secure and will provide an invaluable contribution to the

local area.

“As well as celebrating Wolverhampton’s rich history, it will also draw footfall to Smestow Valley Local Nature Reserve and support the local economy.

“We will, of course, continue to assist the tenant with the management of the asset and I am looking forward to seeing the centre build on its popularity over the coming years.”

The centre operates on a not-for-profit basis with any surpluses generated being reinvested back into the museum and building, with more than £45,000 invested to date.

Alec Brew, the centre's curator and chairman of Trustees, said: “This is great news for the centre.

"It helps us secure the long-term future of the museum, which is already a real asset to the city.

“The council has been very supportive and helpful ever since we started using the building in 2014 and the new lease will now enable us to bid for grant funding and work towards accredited museum status.”

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