A New Vision for Berwick Barracks

Living Barracks Project Updates

Keep up to date with the Berwick Barracks partnership and how our new vision for the Barracks is progressing. From consultations with the local community to new funding to the steps we're taking to bring empty buildings and spaces back into use.

October 2023

Closing the KOSB musuem

The King’s Own Scottish Borderers’ museum has now closed and the collection is being decanted into the West Block of the barracks whilst work takes place in the East Block.

The KOSB’s collection is being documented and its condition assessed to form a conservation schedule. The collection will later make up part of the new museum at the barracks, but in the meantime,  visitors will be able to access the collection through temporary displays in the barracks.

August 2023

Developing the Mob Store

Work has begun to build a new temporary cinema in Berwick while the town's arts centre is transformed. The new fully accessible cinema will be designed so the Mob Store can then be adapted into an archive facility when The Maltings redevelopment is completed. The project will include upgrading the exterior and soundproofing to form a dedicated cinema space, along with a new kiosk/box office, foyer space, temporary toilet block and accessible/cycle parking.

View of Berwick Barracks parade ground. Looking in from the entrance.

April - May 2023

Discussions with the local community

Four discussion groups have taken place to understand better what local people would like to see in the new museum and archives.

Societies and organisations from Berwick to Coldstream across the border, including history and archaeological societies, teachers, a young carers' organisation, a Scottish Men's Shed and a variety of Berwick residents, joined the discussions. Many already had a keen interest in the project.

There was strong support for a museum that tells the story of and explores the unique nature of the town and ideas for the stories that it might cover, particularly of the strong links between the town and the Kings Own Scottish Borderers ('they were Berwickers' grandfathers').

Identity, whether someone is a Berwicker, a Borderer, a Scot or a Northumbrian, was an important part of the discussions, as is the stories belonging to each can be part of the museum and the activities it will feature. There is also a desire for more events and other opportunities that can bring the community together, and strong support for a rich community engagement pilot programme. 

February 2023

New project roles

To get this project underway and fulfil the partnership's vision, a number of project specific roles have been created and filled.

The roles include an Interpretation Manager, KOSB Conservator, KOSB Digitisation, Project Archivist and Historical Researcher Post and a Buildings Curator.

November 2022

Further grant awarded for the Living Barrack’s Project

The National Lottery Heritage Fund has awarded £476k grant to English Heritage on behalf of the Berwick Barracks Partnership. This vital funding is another step towards the transformation of Berwick Barracks, creating a vibrant cultural hub for the town of Berwick-upon-Tweed and better telling the Barracks’ fascinating story. As part of the first phase of the project, a new home for visual art will be created and the King’s Own Scottish Borderers Regimental Museum. Studio spaces for local artists to show and sell their work will also be available.

March 2022

Cultural Development Fund

A grant of £4.2m from the Cultural Development Fund has been awarded to English Heritage on behalf of the Berwick Barracks Partnership. The funding represents an important next step in delivering the Living Barracks project, enabling the partners to better tell the Barracks’ dramatic and intriguing story, and creating a vibrant cultural hub for the town of Berwick-upon-Tweed.

August 2021 & October 2022

Consultations with the Local Community

So far we have held two consultations with the local community at Berwick Barracks, one on 14 August 2021 and another on 15 October 2022. It was great to meet so many engaged and passionate local people, full of ideas and questions about the project. In general the comments we have received have been very positive, with a number of questions about the residential and cultural aspects of the proposals. Click here for a summary of these questions from both October 2022 and August 2021, and the responses from the Berwick Barracks Partnership. We are planning another consultation for spring 2023.