Gateway is on the at risk register in the city
CONCERNS about the state of a 15th century Leicester landmark have seen it added to a list of historic features under threat.
Watchdog Historic England has added the Turret Gateway of Leicester Castle to its new Heritage at Risk register for 2017.
The stone structure, also known as Rupert’s Arch, has been earmarked for repairs by Leicester City Council.
Chairman of the city’s civic society Stuart Bailey said: “It is a worry that this has found its way on to the register.
“It is, of course, just a fragment of a much larger four-storey gateway which controlled access to the castle.
“It used to have a house above it and was very imposing.
“It is widely, and incorrectly, assumed that it was largely destroyed in the fighting in the city during the Civil War.
“Actually it survived that and stood until the 1830s.
“It was destroyed in an election riot, a Chartist riot, when it was burned down leaving just what you can see today.”
A city council spokesman said: “We’ve had a full structural survey carried out on the turret gateway.
“The report from the survey shows work needs to be carried out to prevent water ingress and vegetation on the structure, and to re-point and replace stone that has degraded in a sympathetic manner.
“These repairs will be highly specialised work and we will go out to tender for a contractor to carry them out. Therefore we don’t know how much the work will cost at the moment.”
While the gateway has been added to the At Risk register, the former Nat West Bank in St Martin’s has been taken off after its refurbishment as Middleton’s steak restaurant.
The grade II-listed Baroquestyle building had languished on the register since 2003 but has undergone a £1.5 million refit to restore it.
In Leicestershire, the grade II Kibworth Harcourt Mill has been placed on the register. The post mill, built in 1711, is, according to Historic England, “suffering the ravages of time and now requires comprehensive repairs”.
The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings is looking for money to carry out the repairs.
There is better news in Measham, where the 1841built Baptist Church has escaped the register after Historic England funded repairs.
The Taylor’s Bell foundry in Loughborough, the only working one in the UK, remains on the register but Historic Eng- land says good progress has been made repairing the roofs and walls as restoration work continues.
Oakham Castle still sits on the register but good progress has been made on wall repairs thanks to lottery and Historic England grants. Work is still needed to stabilise the remains of the motte.
Turret Gateway of Leicester Castle