Between 2016 and 2018, 22 Sheds CIC was funded to involve the community in the Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI) that was improving Coatsworth Road in Bensham and Saltwell through restoration and upgrades of the shops, buildings and street. This £1.9 million of investment, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, included giving property owners grants to help restore their shops in the THI area. The THI area was limited to the conservation area which runs from the Stamp Shop at No 78, up to Danskys at Whitehall Road junction. Many of these historic buildings had lost their character over the years and the conservation building-work offered them a new lease of life. Work was done to a number of buildings including Danskys, Adam's Continental Foodstore and the Stamp Shop. The initiative also provided business support to Coatsworth Road local traders.
Local History Resource packs for schools
The initiative also funded activities to engage school children and local people in the heritage of the area and the conservation work. 22 Sheds worked with three local primary school, with children exploring Coatsworth Road for evidence of their local history heritage and developed projects through patterns, artwork and poetry. 22 Sheds opened a Project Room in the Cumbric shop on Coatsworth Road to involve local people and in here were displayed the school children's work, alongside archive material from the road and recipes from local shop owners.
To access the schools learning packs from this project visit the local studies section of Gateshead Library website http://www.gatesheadlibraries.com/gateshead-local-history-/resources-fo…
A local Facebook page was established during the project and is still in action, being run by locals and sharing news from around the area: https://www.facebook.com/coatsworthvillage/