Reading Abbey prepares for 2018 opening

A Lottery grant of £1.77m towards conserving and reopening Reading Abbey means that the site is recognised as being one the most important on the Thames.

Reading Borough Council is adding £1.38m worth of funding .

The plan is for the Abbey ruins to be be fully open to the public in 2018.

Cllr Paul Gittings, lead member for culture, said: “This award is the culmination of years of planning on the part of the Council and allows vital conservation works to take place which will preserve the ruins for generations of people to explore and enjoy.”

Deputy Council leader Tony Page said: “Reading’s heritage deserves to be celebrated, as does a site of such historical significance in the heart of Reading. By opening it up to residents and visitors the Council hopes many more people will have the opportunity to appreciate the Abbey and its history.”

This comes at a time when plans are in hand to find the grave of Henry I who was buried in the Abbey.