THESE are the striking new images that campaigners hope will help them secure a multi-million-pound Heritage Lottery Fund grant to build a new landmark museum and art gallery in the town.

Today, trustees of the Swindon Museum and Art Gallery have pulled the covers off the new artist's impressions of the museum, which reveal a significant change to the original plans drawn up earlier this year.

Trust director Rod Hebden said that after a number of consultation events with members of the public, all of the suggestions and comments had been fed back to architects Make, and as a result the plans have evolved throughout the summer.

Now the trust and its team are in the final stages of consultation and engagement before they complete their application for an anticipated £12m of HLF funding for the new building, which is due in before the end of November.

Swindon Borough Council has already pledged £5m towards the project, and at a meeting of the cabinet this evening councillors will be asked to allocate a further £245,000 a year towards the project.

This Is Wiltshire: Rod Hebden, newly appointed Director of the Swindon Museum and Art Gallery Trust. Picture: Dave Cox

  • Swindon Museum and Art Gallery trust director Rod Hebden

One of the most striking adjustments revealed by the new blueprints is that the position of the building, which was originally planned to be on the site of the old multi-storey carpark that stood next to the Wyvern Theatre, may now change to the opposite side of the open air carpark, bordering Princes Street.

Rod said: “When we went out to consultation, the plans showed the new building directly on the space that remains now that the multi-storey car park has been demolished.

“But people began asking us why we weren’t showing the building off more to traffic and pedestrians passing through on Princes Street.

"This landmark building needs to be as prominent as possible, showing off the emerging cultural quarter and bringing people and much more investment into our town centre, where it is needed, so we discussed the feasibility of that with the team, and we’ve reconfigured the square so that the museum and art gallery can be on the edge of Princes Street, with the piazza to the west.

"We agree with those who suggested the change that it’s an even better solution than the one we began with.

"We’re now working closely with the council to see if we can explore whether this change can work.”

The trust estimates that over the course of the first part of the year they have consulted with around 4,000 members of the public on the proposals.

The trust has also been liaising with teachers and lecturers about the needs of schools and colleges to get the most out of the facilities, and have asked employers for their input too. Meetings with neighbours to the site and a "stakeholder workshop" are also taking place in the coming weeks.

The HLF is expected to reach a decision on successful bids in Spring 2018.

To back the bid or give feedback on the plans for a new museum and art gallery, you can complete the form at or email