A public consultation is underway on the latest design proposals for the restoration of the Grade I Listed Maison Dieu in Dover, supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, The Wolfson Foundation, and The Landmark Trust. The public are also being consulted on a series of events and activities which will form part of the project.
The latest designs mainly focus on the Victorian parts of the Maison Dieu and preserving the fabric of the building. The proposals are centred around delivering the following key capital works:
- A new, street level entrance to provide a better welcome with improved access and facilities for visitors
- Improvements to the Connaught Hall, including the restoration of William Burges’ decorative interiors
- Improvements to the kitchen and servery facilities to increase catering capacity
- Conversion of the Mayor’s Parlour into a holiday let, including restoring Burges’ decorative interiors, to be let by The Landmark Trust
- Conversion of the former Visitor Information Centre and gaol cells into a café to be let commercially.
Alongside this major programme of conservation and restoration works, the plans for the Maison Dieu will include a wide range of opportunities for people to get involved through learning new skills, understanding the history of the Maison Dieu, and taking part in cultural events and community activities.
Consultation boards are currently on display at the Maison Dieu with this year’s Dover Operatic & Dramatic Society pantomime, Aladdin (16-18 January), providing the perfect opportunity for people to see and have their say on the proposals.
Cllr Trevor Bartlett, Leader of Dover District Council, and project champion for the restoration of the Maison Dieu, said: “The emerging design proposals for the Maison Dieu provide another opportunity for us to gain feedback from local people. We’re particularly keen to find out what they think of the plans to improve access and use of the Maison Dieu, and to hear from the local community about what activities they would like to see hosted at the Maison Dieu.
“Whether it be apprenticeships working alongside some of our conservation specialists, taking part in an archaeological dig, or attending more cultural events, we want local people to help shape the future plans for the Maison Dieu.”
The consultation display boards can also be viewed online along with a short questionnaire.
Posted on 16 January 2020