Enforcement action could be taken to protect Wellingborough hotel

The Hind Hotel in Sheep Street, Wellingborough
The Hind Hotel in Sheep Street, Wellingborough
1
Have your say

Enforcement action could be taken to help safeguard the future of a well-known hotel.

Councillors are set to discuss The Hind Hotel at a meeting of Wellingborough Council’s development committee next week.

With the Grade II* listed building in Sheep Street deteriorating in recent years, an open market valuation and a surveyor’s estimate of the cost of necessary repairs was commissioned in December.

Now that a quantity surveyor’s report has been completed on the cost of repairing the defects, councillors will be asked to approve that the appropriate enforcement notice is served on the property owners and all interested parties.

A report for the meeting states: “The state of repair of the Hind Hotel has been deteriorating over the last 15 years.

“Complaints have also been received regularly from members of the public and the Wellingborough Civic Society regarding its deterioration.

“As a Grade II* listed building the council has the power to take steps to protect and maintain its historic fabric.

“It is important for the council to consider its powers to act in a timely manner where the historic asset is being allowed to deteriorate and the owners are either unable or unwilling to carry out repairs.”

The report says that since a new owner took over the hotel in 2015, some minor repairs have been undertaken but no significant repair works have taken place.

In discussions with Historic England’s Heritage at Risk (HAR) department, there was a site visit to assess the building on March 1.

While the HAR meeting suggested that the hotel does not yet meet the criteria to be identified as a building at risk by Historic England, it is moving towards this stage.

Three notices could be issued - a Section 215 notice, an urgent works notice or a repairs notice.

Historic England has ‘strongly advised’ that a plan for a potential compulsory purchase order (CPO) and beyond is in place before a repairs notice is served.

The report also says: “For parts of the building that are unoccupied defects that require urgent intervention could be dealt with by an urgent works notice.

“They include the roof, rotting carpentry to windows and porch, masonry repair/re-pointing, and the need for a rainwater goods overhaul.

“The estimated costs of such urgent works would be £100,000.

“In the event that the works are not completed by the owner the council can intervene and complete them.

“This cost can be claimed back from the owner of the hotel as a charge against the property.

“A Section 215 notice can only be served for defects that affect the amenity of the area.

“The estimated cost of such a notice would be £65,000.

“In the event that the works are not completed by the owner the council can intervene and complete them.

“This cost can be claimed back from the hotel as a charge against the property.

“A repairs notice would have the widest remit requesting extensive works to the property.

“The estimated cost of a repairs notice would be £1 million.

“In the event of works not being completed by the owner the council can proceed to CPO.”

Councillors will be asked to resolve that the appropriate enforcement notice is served on the property owners and all interested parties once the valuation is received.

It will also be invited to recommend to the resources committee that the costs of an urgent works notice are covered by capital reserves.

The meeting starts at 7pm on Monday at Swanspool House in Wellingborough.