WATCH: Combermere Abbey celebrates its history with heritage film grant

An historic house near Whitchurch has celebrated the completion of a series of promotional films thanks to culture recovery grants.

Historic house Combermere Abbey, just outside the town, is celebrating the completion of a series of films on the abbey’s history and restoration thanks to a financial boost from the government, as part of the ongoing £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund.

Thanks to a second successful round, Combermere Abbey received £21,000, part of which will be used to promote tours and visits of the abbey and grounds to educational groups and interested parties.

Produced by ATS Heritage, the videos cover almost 900 years of the abbey’s history, from its formation to the present day. A narrator tells the history of Combermere, with short interludes from current custodian Sarah Callander Beckett, telling her story of inheriting the abbey.

The video is now widely available and gives those who have not yet had the chance to visit Combermere Abbey, a never before seen look into the property and its colourful history.

Sarah Callander Beckett, owner of Combermere Abbey said: “The grant money was such a lifeline for us after so many months closed due to the pandemic. We are excited to open back up and welcome back guests and this grant from the Culture Recovery Fund will be instrumental in this.”

This footage will also be used to promote the tours of Combermere Abbey, which are back for 2021 after being unable to go ahead last year. There are a number of options available to book, including individual, group and Historic Houses VIP invitation to view tours which includes an afternoon tea with Sarah. The estate is also keen to engage with local schools and educational groups to develop outdoor visits which offer such valuable opportunities to develop life skills and experiences.

Ben Cowell, Director General of Historic Houses Association added: “We are thrilled that so many Historic Houses member properties have been awarded grants through the Culture Recovery Fund.

"Houses like Combermere Abbey play vital roles in their local areas – whether as employers, as destinations to visit, as settings for weddings and other events, or as important historical landmarks. The support from the Culture Recovery Fund means that places like these, facing some of the worst trading conditions for more than 70 years, once again have a viable future.”

For more information on the abbey, and to follow the story of how the grant will be used, you can find Combermere Abbey on social media or at combermereabbey.co.uk

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