A  NEAR £2m bid for lottery funding has been made to turn the site of Hereford’s former munitions factory into a heritage park.

The Rotherwas site is said to have to potential to attract more the 15,000 visitors a year  in telling the story of the city’s contribution to two world wars.

At the heart of the heritage park project on Skylon Park is the now derelict shell store and the bid to the heritage lottery fund shows how the building's historic past, and 10 acres of land around it, could be brought back to life.

The team behind the project, which includes land owner Herefordshire Council and Enterprise Zone Board, supported by local partners and history groups, is asking for £1.7m.

Neil Kerr, vice-chairman of the Enterprise Zone Board, said: “We have worked extremely hard on our draft proposals, and on our bid, which demonstrates real drive and passion to protect this site and transform it for future generations.

“This is a community effort and it is about celebrating the contribution of the people who worked here and also commemorating those who died working at the munitions site.

“Using structures which remain, including the blast walls and the steel structure of the shell store, we are aiming to sympathetically tell the story of the women, and some men, who worked here.

“We have been delighted and grateful for the tremendous amount of support from the community in response to these initial proposals, and the comments and information we've received will feed into the project as we progress, hopefully with heritage lottery funding.”

The project's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/shellstore has received a number of responses which fed into the funding bid and it has also been featured as part of the BBC's Women at War programme with Kate Adie to be screened later this year. 

Feedback can also be emailed to social@skylonpark.co.uk