Devon Historic Buildings Trust was formed in 1973 as a joint initiative with Devon’s Conservation Forum and Devon County Council for the benefit of the people of Devon and the nation at large to ensure a future for historic buildings and structures of particular architectural, historical or constructional interest.
Over the last 43 years DHBT has rescued 47 buildings of particular merit that might have otherwise been demolished or allowed to collapse and restored them for appropriate uses of today.
Proceeds from this work were then available for further acquisition and restoration. Over the years, with the continuing support from grant funds, supplemented by private and commercial donations and with careful stewardship, the Trust continues with its work.
The DHBT has five ways in which it can work to rescue the buildings of Devon. The DHBT specialises in premises that are landmarks; are Listed; are important historic buildings or war memorials.
1. Buy and Sell
The DHBT is a revolving buildings trust that may buy, renovate and sell for a profit. All profits are then used for subsequent projects.
2. Buy, Lease and Retain
The DHBT is able to lease a property, renovate it and retain it for the future. Any profits from business use or rent are used to maintain the property.
3. Buy and Preserve
The DHBT may buy and preserve a building until a sustainable long term solution is found. The DHBT may sell the property to secure a new future within the local community.
4. Act as a catalyst or broker
The DHBT may pull together a team to save a premises by taking out an option to purchase, to find a long term sustainable user and then restore or upgrade the building using available historic buildings grants.
5. Act in Advisory Capacity
The DHBT may help organisations come together to form a body or trust to purchase or lease and thus rescue an historic building. Additionally the DHBT is able to assist with the rescue of a building by way of sourcing viability studies, the preparation of conservation plans and funding streams.