Ridgmont station is currently undergoing extensive restoration supported by substantial investment from the Railway Heritage Trust (RHT) and the current owners Bedford Rural Communities Charity (BRCC). Michael Sheppard at Inspire Conservation has been involved with the project and client from the beginning of the work two years ago following an inquiry from Simic Associates. Michael has managed and performed the restoration of the external timber frame, lime harling panels, internal lime plastering, flooring and brickwork. Other elements including the roof, rainwater goods and insulation have been overhauled, now completing the majority of the external fabric making the building watertight for the winter.
The station is an important feature on the Bletchley to Bedford line as it is one of the last in public ownership as custodians BRCC are a charitable body. The building is constructed in the Cottage Orné style to complement the structures on the Duke of Bedford’s estate. The station was opened in 1846 and used until the late 70’s. The building is timber framed with lime render panels and brickwork plinths. The condition two years ago was close to derelict and parts of the building close to collapse. The work that has been undertaken, by all parties, has helped save this listed building which will be used as small business offices, museum and education facility and meeting rooms.
The RHT and BRCC have invested a significant amount of time and energy to revive this building and have been very impressed with the quality of the work undertaken on the site. They will continue to invest in the building for the remaining phases of work going in to the new year. Michael Sheppard at Inspire Conservation is proud of the project and hopes to be involved from start to finish.