Question mark over future of prince’s former funhouse

Back to the drawing board

Back to the drawing board

A world-famous venue has failed to secure vital funding for its future

The Heritage Lottery Fund has turned down a bid from the Royal Pavilion Estate in Brighton for around £14 million.

The Arts Council has ring-fenced £5.8 million towards a planned £35 million revamp of the gardens and buildings at the former palace of George IV.

The Royal Pavilion lost out to schemes from Canterbury Cathedral, Nottingham Castle, the Beamish Museum in County Durham, Blackpool Museum and the Plymouth History Centre.

But a spokeswoman for the estate said the feedback from HLF was  encouraging.

She said:” Their Trustees specifically noted the high heritage importance of the Estate and they believe the need for the project was clearly demonstrated. They added that they clearly understand and support our Master Plan vision and especially welcome the prospect of an integrated offer for visitors within a more unified Royal Pavilion Estate.

“This project is vital to the heart of the city and we will continue to work with all our partners and key stakeholders to develop our approach for future funding applications to HLF in the coming months in order to progress the plan to connect, preserve and celebrate the Royal Pavilion Estate.”

Andrew Comben, CEO, Brighton Dome and Brighton Festival, said: “Our ambition is to transform and revitalize the Royal Pavilion Estate into a world class heritage site at the heart of Brighton and Hove. I am of course disappointed that we have not been successful this time round in bidding for Heritage Lottery funding but we are very encouraged by the feedback given to us by HLF Trustees and delighted they are so supportive of our vision. We will continue to work with HLF and all our partners on developing plans for a sustainable future for the Royal Pavilion Estate.”

Janita Bagshawe, director, Royal Pavilion and Museums said. “We need to not lose sight of our ambition to transform and revitalize a world class heritage site at the heart of Brighton and Hove. We will continue to work with HLF and our partners to develop the long term plan for the Royal Pavilion estate and to secure the funding to do so. It is the symbol of the city and deserves to be a place that everyone can experience and enjoy.”