Maintaining Ironbridge

The grounds under the ownership of the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust are extensive so require a large amount of planned and reactive maintenance work.

To help carry out maintenance across our ten sites we bid for additional funding to support our Maintaining Ironbridge project, and in 2023 we were successful in securing £250,000 from the National Heritage Lottery Fund (NHLF).

This grant is made possible thanks to National Lottery players. As a result of securing this money, we have been able to continue maintaining our sites and working towards ensuring a wider number of people can benefit from our local heritage. 

Our maintenance team will also be able to build capacity and develop skills which will have a long-term benefit for the Museum.

This project will contribute to the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust's ability to help maintain, improve and restore the fabric and landscape of listed buildings, scheduled ancient monuments, and museum sites.

Of particular importance are:

  • Maintenance to improve the 'look and feel' of the historic estate, improving the visitor offer and experience
  • Improving the physical accessibility of sites by repair and maintenance work to site pathways and exhibit entrances.
  • Repairs and maintenance of the welfare centre at Blists Hill Victorian Town Ironworks for use by education groups, volunteers and staff.

Funding will also be used to cover reactive maintenance, planned maintenance, and project staff costs.

If you are interested in learning more about this project please get in touch with us.


As part of this project, Telford & Wrekin Inclusive Gardening Service (TWIGS) has been working closely with our grounds maintenance team.

TWIGS was launched by Telford & Wrekin Council and has a team of gardeners from the Council's Skills Unit for Adults with Disabilities, providing vulnerable adults with the ability to learn basic garden maintenance skills, including:

  • Gardening
  • Grass cutting
  • Hedge Maintenance


Almost 100 Volunteers from Schneider Electric in Telford came to support a large maintenance project on the Coalbrookdale Arboretum in July. The group were supplied with tools by our grounds maintenance team and managed by us on the day. They were briefed, divided up into teams and completed all manner of maintenance jobs, including:

  • Clearing Moss and weeds from steps and footpaths
  • Pruning overhanging trees and shrubs from pathways
  • Removing countless logs from recent tree work to a space where they could be collected by our team for use in BH Fireplaces over the winter
  • Cutting long grasses back from the Damson Collection which were causing damage to the trees

We really struggle to have enough resource to complete work in our 11 acre site so engaging a large corporate like this is vital. It also really supports our ambition in this project to involve a wider range of people in our work and engage community members on a more direct level.

visitor centre

Part of the role of our maintenance team is to ensure that the standards and presentation of the visitor offer is first class. With the support of the NLHF, the costs associated with this team have been reduced which provides greater resilience to The Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust.

Ahead of peak trading over the summer bank holiday, the maintenance team refreshed areas of the visitor centre at Blists Hill Victorian Town which included a refurbishment of the visitor toilets, entrances to the café and world heritage gallery, installation of new visitor signage, and repairs to lighting and walls in the café.

Thanks to National Lottery players!

Members of the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust team in front of the Boy & Swan Fountain

In March 2023, we offered free admission to National Lottery Players during the 'Thanks to You' week.