Leading officials from Historic England visited Dudley to see how their cash funding has sparked positive change in the borough.
The Mayor of Dudley, Councillor David Stanley, welcomed a delegation led by Louise Brennan, recently appointed regional director of Historic England (Midlands).
She was joined by colleagues Nick Carter, inspector for scheduled monuments, and Sarah Lewis, inspector for historic buildings and areas.
The delegation first visited the mayor’s parlour, where council officers outlined plans for the proposed Black Country Geopark and discussed the heritage-led regeneration of Dudley town centre.
Historic England has most recently awarded £2 million to the council to establish a Heritage Action Zone in Brierley Hill, and an introduction to those plans was outlined as well.
The group were then taken on a tour of Dudley town centre led by Jayne Pilkington, senior conservation officer for the council. She showed areas where help from Historic England has sparked regeneration, including the conversion of The Old Glass House restaurant in Stone Street.
In the afternoon the group were then taken on a tour of Dudley Zoo & Castle by zoo director Derek Grove, with particular focus on the 20th century Tecton structures there.
Councillor David Stanley, the Mayor of Dudley, said:
"I was very pleased to welcome officials from Historic England into the parlour, and then to join them on a tour of the town centre.
"It is an organisation that has provided crucial grant assistance and advice to the local planning authority which has, and will continue, to help with the heritage-led regeneration of the borough.
"It was nice to be able to show them the real positive changes that the council has been able to make with the funding, and we hope to be able to have long and fruitful relationship with them into the future."