Welcome to Great Bow Wharf

The Background

The Warehouse Trust is the charity behind Great Bow Wharf. The charity aims to:

  • To preserve the historical, architectural and constructional heritage that may exist in and around Langport in buildings (including any structure or erection, and any part of a building as so defined) of particular beauty or historical, architectural or constructional interest;
  • To support the community and economic regeneration of Langport and the surrounding area including the relief of poverty and the improvement of the condition of life in socially and economically disadvantaged communities;
  • To support the promotion of sustainable development in Somerset. 

Great Bow Wharf offers serviced offices/work spaces on long or short term lets, including hot desk space. There is also a room for hire, suitable for a range of meetings/events. 

The History

Situated in Langport, on the eastern bank of the River Parrett, Great Bow Wharf is a Grade II listed building, restored and reopened in 2007. It is an example of Victorian industrial architecture.

The Warehouse was built in the late 18th century of English bond red brick, with Flemish bond extensions. It has clay plain tile roofs with hipped ends. It was built by the Parrett Navigation Company, a trading Company owned by Vincent Stuckey and Walter Bagehot, on the banks of the River Parrett. When the river became unnavigable the buildings usefulness waned and was eventually abandoned.

The present warehouse was built in the early 1800s to serve the Parrett Navigation Company for trading salt and corn. However there has clearly been a wharf here for centuries before that; Langport is mentioned in the Domesday Book by the name of 'Lanporth' - thought to mean the 'long port' by some, or the 'long marketplace' by others.

The Somerset Trust for Sustainable Development, purchased the site, designated as a brown field site, in February 2003, and worked with Somerset Buildings Preservation Trust (SBPT), English Heritage and local councils to redevelop it into a craft, heritage learning and small business centre, with the surrounding land being used for an eco-friendly housing development

The aim was to repair the warehouse as an example of sustainable and historic restoration and to develop a centre with high quality office space for permanent tenants, meeting rooms for hire and a cafe, thereby supporting the regeneration of the town.

Restored using sustainable techniques and local, natural materials, The Warehouse at Great Bow Wharf, on the bank of the River Parrett, now serves as a thriving centre for social enterprise, with the Kitchen café, exhibition space and well equipped conference facilities.

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