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Trust Launches New Website

Swindon’s Mechanics’ Institution Trust is today officially launching its new brand and website.

The re-branding, marketing and print is being supported by local company Citrus Creative and the website by Oikos following a 6 month process of development and consultation with Trust members.

The Trust will now simply be known as The Mechanics’ Institution Trust, a much shorter and simpler name than used previously.

We hope you like the new site. Keep a watch for more developments over the coming months as we continue to launch new features and content.

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Visit to Manchester Victoria Baths

A visit to the Victoria Baths in Manchester this week was a very insightful experience and highlighted many similarities between them and the Mechanics’s Trust. Following the Baths winning BBC Restoration in 2003 the Trust has been working tirelessly to complete the restoration and open the building to the public again. Whilst the swimming baths are not yet open the building hosts many tours, events and projects with volunteer groups. More information can be found here. During the visit more than 100 photos were taken of this amazing building and its historic features, a small selection is below.

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Tetbury Goods Shed

Daniel Rose Chair of The Mechanics’ Institution Trust was invited to attend an open day at the Tetbury Goods Shed on Saturday 16th October. The Tetbury Rail Lands Regeneration Trust have plans to restore the last remaining example of railway heritage in the town for community use.

The Mechanics’ Institution Trust has proposed that local heritage trusts should forge closer links regarding GWR heritage in the region, especially given the opportunities for a potential world heritage site from Bristol Temple Meads to London Paddington, including Swindon’s railway village.

Further information on the Tetbury Goods Shed is available here.

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Trust published in Government Gazette

The Trust took its thoughts on the Big Society direct to politicians through the publication Government Gazette, distributed and sold to those across the political environment.

This well timed article is currently in the party conference editions alongside an article by English Heritage Chair Baroness Kay Andrews.

Click on the article to enlarge.

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Mechanics' Theatre roof coming off

As many people know (not least the residents of the Railway Village) the roof is being removed from the theatre due to concerns that it was in danger of collapse and therefore cause damage to the rest of the structure. Swindon Borough Council temporarily took control of the building in July to carry out Urgent Works after failing to receive sufficient reassurances from the owner, Forefront Estates, that it would do the work within a reasonable time and to the required standard. During investigations to commence the urgent works set out in the Urgent Works Report produced last year it was deemed that the roof needed immediate attention and an Emergency Repairs process is now underway on site. These Emergency Works are separate from the Urgent Works which we believe will commence as previously planned once the roof has been dealt with.

The Trust is urging Swindon Borough Council and other stakeholders to use this unfortunate situation as a catalyst and “wake up call” to bring about productive dialogue and partnership with the Trust to create a bright future for Swindon’s most important building.

BBC Points West visited Swindon last week to cover the issue and is available to watch by clicking here.

The Theatres Trust, the national advisory body for theatres has expressed their concerns and has shown its support for the Mechanics’ Trust’s efforts. The letter can be viewed by clicking here and more information on The Theatres Trust is available here:

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Children's Fete a success

The 2010 Children’s Fete has been hailed a success adding another year to this annual Swindon tradition. Thank you to all of those that helped in some way whether a sponsor, volunteer or performer and most importantly thank you to those that attended the Fete and enjoyed the park.

Pictures of the day are available on SwindonWeb, click here to view.

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Children's Fete 2010

We hope that you can join us for the annual Children’s Fete on the 17th July, organised by the Mechanics’ Institution Trust. Thanks to all those that have supported the Trust to hold this popular Swindon event again.

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New-look Trust's challenge to politicians

SwindonWeb were given exclusive access to a recent public presentation by the Trust in response to the Government’s “Big Society” policy.

Speaking at the Swindon Civic Trust event Daniel Rose, Chair of the Trust also introduced the Trust logo and gave an update on the current situation with the Institution.

Read the full article here.

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Trust presenting plans

As part of the Swindon Civic Trust events programme Daniel Rose, Chair of The New Mechanics’ Trust will be the guest speaker on the 10th June, at 7:30pm at the Central Community Centre, Emlyn Square. In what promises to be an informative and upbeat presentation Daniel will focus upon the opportunity that the Mechanics’ Institution gives us, providing an overview of the current situation and the explain the Trust’s proposals.  The session will end on a question and answer session.

The event is free to Swindon Civic Trust members or £4 to non-members including light refreshments. For more information please e-mail via the website: or call: 01793 520592.

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Ministerial Visit

The Trust was pleased to host a visit from Lord Adonis, The Secretary of State for Transport and a railways enthusiast last night.

Lord Adonis heard from Trustee’s and members of the Railway Village community about their views of the Institution and the Trust’s plans for its restoration and long term use. Enthused by the discussion Lord Adonis was then taken on a tour of the Railway Village led by Daniel Rose, Chair of the New Mechanics’ Trust.

Also in attendance were Anne Snelgrove – South Swindon Constituency Parliamentary Candidate; Victor Agarwal – North Swindon Constituency Parliamentary Candidate; and Central Ward Councillor Bob Wright.

Lord Adonis pledged his support and commended the Trust for its success and hard work over the last 15 years.

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