God’s House Tower (GHT), a spectacular refurbishment project by local art organisation ‘a space’ arts, is due to open later this year thanks to a final donation of £60,000 from the Barker-Mill Foundation (BMF), which has enabled the works to be completed.
The donation follows BMF’s previous £100,000 donation towards the six-year project, to bring God’s House Tower back to life as a new distinctive arts and heritage venue in Southampton’s old town.
Once the works are complete, the residents of Southampton and beyond will be welcomed to explore, enjoy and celebrate this rejuvenated historical focal point within the city. Visitors will be able to discover the monument in its entirety with access to different exhibitions and activities across four floors, including the roof where spectacular views across Southampton water awaits.
There will be permanent exhibition which interprets the colourful 700-year history of the building, all the way back to the French raid of 1338. A floor will also be dedicated to the history of the gunners who protected the walls of the city and another dedicated to the building’s past as a jail.
What’s more, the arts and heritage programme will feature new work by local contemporary artists made in response to GHT’s history and its position on Southampton’s iconic coastline. The Collections Gallery will exhibit a number of rarely seen works, creating improved public access to and appreciation of important yet infrequently exhibited works from the city’s magnificent collection.
Daniel Crow, Director of ‘a space’ arts, said: “We are extremely excited to be so close to finishing the project and being able to open the doors. We are most grateful to the Barker-Mill Foundation for their support. They have made a valuable contribution and we are so proud to have them involved.
“In recognition and appreciation of the support provided by the Barker-Mill Foundation; we plan to name the Collections Gallery at God’s House Tower in honour of the Barker-Mill Family.”
The Barker-Mill Foundation is proud of its Southampton roots and is an avid supporter of Southampton’s history and arts scene. Tim Jobling, Trustee at Barker-Mill Foundation, said “It’s wonderful that after six years hard work, God’s House Tower is set to finally open this year.
“‘A space’ arts have done a fantastic job in restoring such a wonderful part of Southampton’s history for us all to enjoy for many years to come. It will be a great place for locals and tourists to learn so much about the history of both the building and the city.”
Along with the art exhibitions, God’s House Tower will also host an ongoing programme of activities such as arts and crafts, family friendly half term events, artists talks, artist led workshops – and lectures and seminars from historians and local artists.
For further information visit www.aspacearts.org.uk