Community support

Funding level: £5,001 to £10,000


The Warminster Athenaeum is a charity which saved a derelict abandoned Grade 2 listed building for posterity and has run it successfully for the past 16 years as a Centre for the Community.

The Youth Services and a disability group (Warminster Adults Valuing Everybody (WAVE )) currently occupy adjacent premises, which were originally an integral part of The Athenaeum but since 1944 have been managed separately by a different landlord (Wiltshire County Council) for the past 70 years. Wiltshire Council has announced a planned alienation of this site, which the Warminster Athenaeum Management Committee considers would benefit both the Trust and wider community by integrating 2 specific community services into our Centre for the Community. Our current offer of meeting and activity spaces will be much improved if we can join the 2 buildings.

Our project is the integration of the two premises. This entails physically reopening the 4 original accesses between the Youth Development Centre and the Athenaeum restoring the internal building circulation to the 1901 design. The works will consist not only of good and level accessible passage ways, but also re-integration of the essential services, including: - heating; water; electrics; fire alarm; emergency escape; security amalgamation. This project has the support of both Wiltshire Council and Warminster Town Council which have made grants towards the costs.

The costs for this work will have to include licensing, inspection and regulatory costs as well as upgrading of toilets and kitchen. We will also need to review the lift capacity load, access and usage. The total costs will be some £60,000 of which we have raised 75% and which an Aviva grant of £9,500 will enable us to complete.

The project will ensure a stable home for a disability support group. It will also result in a more vibrant Centre for the Community in our integrated premise hosting over 30 annual amateur and professional theatre productions, 12 concerts and 15 films annually as well as hire spaces for specific interest groups from U3A to pre-school nursery.

Project Video

Warminster Athenaeum Trust

From Bankruptcy over the past 16 years the Trust has grown to:

• Host 30+User Groups from pre-School to U3A and many specific interest groups.
• Nurture and develop 70+ volunteers working as managers, receptionists and stewards.
• Attracting over 10,000 visitors annually to shows and events.

Location: 18/20 High Street, Warminster, United Kingdom