2:56pm Friday 18th October 2013
By Miran Rahman
Haworth residents and traders are looking forward to continuing their world-famous village’s enhancement after the attraction was officially removed from an ‘at risk’ register.
The village was added to the list in 2010 after English Heritage warned modern additions, poor maintenance and advertising-related clutter were eroding the area’s character.
Since this worrying assessment, thousands of pounds have been spent on relaying the setts in Main Street and changing the facades of several buildings to make them look more in keeping with their surroundings.
And last week, as revealed in the Keighley News, Haworth was finally taken off the ‘at risk’ list.
One of the Main Street shops that took part in the restoration was Mrs Beighton’s Sweet Shop, which had its frontage returned to how it would have looked more than a century ago. The work was funded by the shop’s owners, Bradford Council and English Heritage.
Business owner, Alan Breeze, said: “I’m over the moon with how the shop looks.
“It could be one of the most photographed shops in Haworth – so many people want their pictures taken outside it, so we must have done something right!”
Bronte Society chairman, Sally McDonald, said: “That Haworth has been taken off the ‘at risk’ register is a credit to what has been achieved by English Heritage, everyone in the village and Bradford Council in recent years.”
English Heritage’s regional director for planning, Trevor Mitchell, visited Haworth in August, when he urged businesses and local organisations to keep up the good work and maintain Haworth as the “window to Yorkshire”.
After last week’s announcement, he said: “The turnaround was very quick, and I think that was because of the very active local community.
“Putting Haworth on the register was a necessary thing to do – at the time, it looked like it was getting worse. Now it looks like it’s getting better, and we’re optimistic it will keep getting better.
“It is good news the council has announced it will carry out a new conservation area appraisal. That will help decide what still needs to be done. We certainly think advertising signs is a big issue that needs dealing with.”
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