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Restoration work on the farm restores barns to former glory
As Cogges gets ready for a new season and prepares to open the farm and grounds to visitors from March 13, you might spot some activity on the rooftops whilst walking past for your daily exercise. Director Colin Shone has been busy this winter overseeing the refurbishment of the stunning 18th century barns, normally used as a unique setting for weddings, craft fairs and festivals. The restoration is part of the Trust's Next Steps programme to restore the farm's buildings to their former glory for the public and school children to enjoy, thanks to the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
Colin explains, "Cogges’ Wheat and Barley barns are a dominant feature of an unspoiled farmyard. Dating back to the early 18th Century, they form an impressive backdrop to all the activity going on in front of them. The condition of the roofs has been degrading over many years and it has been an immediate priority of the Trust on taking on the freehold in April 2020 to ensure that these magnificent buildings are preserved.
Listed Building Consent was received in August 2020 to reroof both barns and the work is being carried out this winter and next. Led by Conservation Architects, James Mackintosh in Chipping Norton, Messenger Construction and roofers G Dowdeswell of Stroud are making sure that the result will be something we can all be proud of.
The focus on craftsmanship and extreme attention to detail is a delight to watch – as an example, 32 different lime mortar combinations were tested to ensure colour and texture match. Sadly, it’s impossible to source Stonesfield slate in sufficient quantity any more, but the reclaimed tiles from Tetbury make a delightful substitute."
We look forward to the first wedding couples enjoying the cosier, drier barns, and to hosting events again as soon as we can, but just as importantly we will eventually be opening the barns up as part of the visitor route. With the help of the National Lottery Heritage Fund, we will be offering public access to the Wheat Barn as part of a visit to Cogges. These are spectacular buildings, with over 300 years of stories and memories - and we look forward to sharing them with you and to ensuring they are with us for future generations to come.
Find out more about Cogges Next Steps project and come and see us soon.