A funding application to refurbish Witney’s Corn Exchange was turned down yesterday.

Witney Town Council had bid for £1.8m from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to update the Grade II-listed Market Square building, which closed suddenly in November 2011 after a safety inspection.

But yesterday Stuart McLeod, head of HLF South East, said: “We recognise the historic importance of the Grade II listed Witney Corn Exchange and its important links to the town’s trading heritage. However, demand for our funding is high.” Sadly, this means that we were unable to support every grant application we looked at on the day.”