College to give back house its dignity

Grantham College principal Linda Houtby stands outside the run-down Stonebridge House in Grantham.
Grantham College principal Linda Houtby stands outside the run-down Stonebridge House in Grantham.

Run-down Stonebridge House is to be given a new lease of life as Grantham College has bought it along with nine associated houses.

It is a long-term investment for Grantham College, as the work to refurbish the former police station will take time. And as it is a Grade II listed building, the work that can be carried out is limited.

Principal Linda Houtby said: “It’s exciting, it’s an opportunity to restore one of Grantham’s listed buildings. Ok, that presents challenges, but it’s in our custody now and we have got an obligation to the community to give it back its original character and a bit of dignity.”

Mrs Houtby said there are no plans to expand the college as such. Instead, by having the use of Stonebridge House there is the option of cancelling leases on other buildings across town and bringing everything together in one area.

Five architectural firms have bid for the contract to carry out the work, and it is now the job of the college’s governors to select the preferred one. The chosen architects are then expected to spend three months putting together a model of various options and consult with both the college community and the wider Grantham community.

Mrs Houtby said: “I think for the college this is a 10-year plan. We don’t want to rush it.”

The college has so far spent around £1.5 million on the project, including an investment into CCTV cameras to make the house and surrounding buildings secure.

The restoration will cost several millions to complete.