Page last updated at 16:25 GMT, Thursday, 5 November 2009

Rare forge scheme wins permission

Chedham's Yard, Wellesbourne
The site closed in the 1960s

A 19th Century wheelwright and blacksmith's workshop which won a BBC restoration show has secured planning permission.

Chedham's Yard, which won Restoration Village in 2006, is due to become a visitor and education centre in 2010 at the site in Wellesbourne, Warwickshire.

Work will cost more than £1m, with 75% of the money coming from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Stratford-on-Avon District Council has granted planning permission.

Chedham's Yard, which closed in 1965, won the BBC show after viewers voted that it should be restored to its former glory.

People have worked so hard for this. It'll be a dream come true for many people
Linda Dane
Parish Council spokeswoman

It was owned and run by seven generations of the Chedham family and the last of those who worked there, Bill Chedham, still lives in the village.

Linda Dane, from the parish council, said: "He's still helping by coming to the yard every now and then and saying what the objects are and who made them.

"People have worked so hard for this. It'll be a dream come true for many people."

'Very active'

The site is due to open in the half-term holiday in October 2010 and is expected to be fully open in the spring of 2011.

The yard was an "outstanding example of traditional working methods and tools", according to the parish council, which owns the site.

The existing three buildings will have "minimal restoration" and another small building will be built.

Some artefacts had been taken out as part of an archaeological exercise to catalogue them, with the rest being removed from the site following flooding in 2007.

The parish council added that The Friends of Chedham's Yard support group has been "very active" photographing, preserving and "cleaning off the rust" from artefacts.

More than half a million votes were cast in the final of the third series of the BBC programme.

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