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Bedford Borough residents invited to build their own High Street

July 31, 2021 8:00 AM
Originally published by Dave Hodgson - Mayor of Bedford Borough

Model of GoldingsIn 2020, Bedford Borough Council received £1.76 million from Historic England as part of the High Street Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ) scheme. The grant will help to deliver building works to regenerate Bedford High Street, alongside a cultural programme that encourages residents to engage with Bedford's local heritage.

On Saturday 17th July, Bedford Borough Council, together with The Higgins Bedford and Albion Archaeology, delivered a virtual workshop for the Bedford Young Archaeologists' Club (YAC). Members of the YAC were invited to build a 3D paper model of the Goldings building, which is located on Bedford High Street.

Residents from across Bedford Borough are now invited to build their own Goldings building at home, with plans to release 3D models for other iconic buildings from the Bedford High Street Heritage Action Zone later in the year.

From Sunday 1 August to Tuesday 31 August, The Higgins Bedford and Albion Archaeology will be running a competition that encourages residents of all ages to build the best 3D Goldings model across three age categories: under 13 years, 13-17 years and over 18 years.

This is part of Bedford Borough Council's celebration of the Festival of Archaeology, which runs from 17 July - 1 August.

BedfordBID are supporting the competition by donating £100 worth of Love Bedford town centre gift vouchers as a prize to residents who have built the best Goldings building. The three best models will also be displayed temporarily at The Higgins Bedford.

Councillor Henry Vann, Portfolio Holder for Town Centres and Planning, said "Get involved and start building your own version of Bedford's High Street. This exciting project, supported and funded by our partners at BedfordBID as part of the community engagement programme, helps to celebrate and inform people about the history of our High Street. For those of us who knew Goldings all our lives, a 1:76 scale model of the historic shop-front is fitting and this new activity is a part of a joint initiative encouraging people to find out more about Bedford's local heritage. Thank you as well to Bedford Young Archaeologists' Club (YAC) for their involvement. If you do take part, please remember to enter the competition."

Jeremy Oegten, Project Manager for Albion Archaeology, said "The Goldings building is one of the classic old shops on Bedford High Street. This fabulous little paper model is fun to make and I can't wait to see how people decorate and customise theirs."

Tony Calladine, Regional Director for Historic England in the East of England, said "This is a creative and fun way of encouraging Bedford people to get to know and appreciate the historic buildings they live, shop, and work in every day and to learn about how they were designed and built. I'm really looking forward to seeing the imaginative competition entries and the start of a mini historic Bedford High Street in the making."

To take part, visit The Higgins Bedford website, where you can download an activity sheet: www.thehigginsbedford.org.uk/Exhibitions/The_Vault.aspx. A limited number of printed copies will also be available to collect from The Higgins Bedford reception area.

You can submit completed 3D models by emailing a photograph of your finished model to towncentre@beford.gov.uk, with the subject line "Build Your Own Bedford - Goldings" and your age.