COUNCIL chiefs in Carmarthenshire have agreed to hand tourist attraction Llanelly House up to £60,000 per year for the next two years.

The decision was made by the executive board in closed session.

Paul Carter, commercial events manager at Llanelly House, said the money would be used to help maintain the grade one-listed structure.

“There are huge running costs,” he said.

The Bridge Street building reopened in 2013 following a multi-million pound renovation paid for by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Welsh Government heritage body Cadw, among others.

It hosts events such as weddings and Christmas parties, as well as attracting visitors with its collections of china and paintings, and is run by the Cambrian Heritage Regeneration Trust.

Llanelly House was originally the home of the Stepney family, of Pembrokeshire and Carmarthenshire. It was built in 1714 by the Sir Thomas Stepney, then Carmarthenshire MP, on the site of an earlier building.

It became a post office, but by the turn of the 21st Century it was rundown and in need of extensive strengthening work to ensure its survival.

In 2003 Llanelly House was a finalist in a BBC television series called Restoration, and momentum gathered for a wholesale revamp.

BBC Wales reported in 2017 that Carmarthenshire Council gave the attraction £350,000 to cover its debts.

BBC Wales said the regeneration trust had received £7.1 million for the renovation but had spent £7.8 million.

Speaking at the time executive board member, councillor David Jenkins, said “there was a possibility” that Llanelly House could have folded without the financial assistance.

The latest funding of £60,000 per year will be subject to a review of the financial forecast prior to the second year.

Mr Carter said the money could be used for things like external rendering and the house’s wooden window sills.

He added: “Insurance costs are eye-wateringly expensive.”

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