This week we are confirming that Advantage West Midlands has withdrawn funding from the project to transform the Newman Brothers Coffin Fittings Factory in Fleet Street. It means that this Grade II* building on the at risk register is likely to remain empty and unused, it is also unclear what will happen to the historically significant contents.
It’s not the first time this news has come out, but this is the first time the Birmingham Conservation Trust has said anything publicly.
Why have we waited?
We still want to see if AWM can come through with an alternative and to that end we have written to them saying we are willing to work with them until the end of October. If there’s no concrete agreement after that we will need to walk away from the building, leaving it in the hands of AWM, who own the place.
What you can do.
Please write to AWM, ask them to reconsider, ask them what they intend to do with the building, query whether this decision was a mistake. If you follow this link and scroll down a bit you’ll find contact details, including some simple to use websites which also make it easy to write to your MP.
There are also some key facts about Newman Brothers which may help you.
The image above is from Genesis4626 taken at the Birmingham Flickr group tour of Newmans on September 11th 2009.