IT IS one of Basingstoke’s most significant historical sites – and now a project is under way to boost awareness, and the appearance, of the Holy Ghost ruins in South View.

Hampshire Museums and Galleries Trust has been awarded a grant of more than £20,000 to install new information panels, as well as improving pathways and clearing undergrowth at the site, behind Basingstoke train station.

The ruins, which date back to the 13th century, include a now disused burial ground where famous former Basing-stoke residents, such as Thomas Bur-berry, are buried.

Debbie Reavell, of Basingstoke Heritage Society, said: “It is a wonderful site with some of the biggest names from Basingstoke’s past buried there.

“When it was built, it was on the northern edge of the town but, since the expansion, it is now pretty much bang in the middle. It is therefore unsurprising that it has fallen foul of vandalism and things like that but the ruins themselves are top notch.”

Mrs Reavell said she is also in discussion with Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council about the potential of creating a new entrance through council-owned land adjacent to the site. She added: “One of the major problems for visitors is access and that would make a world of difference.”

Hampshire County Council has awarded a grant of £18,700, while Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council has added £1,150. Work has already begun to improve the pathways and undergrowth, with the whole project expected to be finished in the summer.

Ian Smith, director of Hampshire Museums and Galleries Trust, said: “This is an important historic site in Basingstoke that is not valued as much as it should be.

“The new signs will better explain what the site is and why it is so valuable to Basingstoke.”