Cranleigh Cottage Hospital Revival Under Way

By Trevor Dale – Chair Cranleigh Heritage Trust CIO

The project to revive the disused XVth Century cottage that was the original Cranleigh Cottage Hospital is progressing well. Cranleigh Heritage Trust Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO), formed to save the cottage and other heritage objects in the local area, has progressed through the first stage of National Lottery Heritage Fund application.

This is terrific news. To get this far has involved a grant from the Architectural Heritage Fund of almost £20,000 plus smaller grants from Cranleigh Parish Council, Chamber of Commerce and Surrey County Council and some small personal donations. We are very grateful for these. These have enabled detailed surveys of the structure and proved the feasibility of saving it for community use.

One of the larger upstairs rooms with a small fireplace and storage shelves

It is a condition of the National Lottery grant that the main purpose must be heritage education and specifically not a museum. The lease on offer from NHS Property Services requires the building has an ongoing health and wellbeing function. Our plan is to open it to the public and for school visits to see the site of the forerunner of the NHS as well as serving as a visitor and tourist information hub.

NHS Property Services has pledged a £50,000 grant associated with the health aspect – envisaged to include meeting and consultancy rooms for what is termed social prescribing. 

Many have asked for a museum but the National Lottery is very clear they will not support funding for new museums. However, we do plan to have history and heritage displays incorporated into the finished project.

Part of the main downstairs room with the original inglenook fireplace at the back

The team is now working to complete stage 2 of the lottery application by late May. The final decision for funding is still over a year away. 

Watch this space for updates on the progress of the funding application, opportunities to get involved or to find out more details of what’s planned. 

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