Wellingborough Roundhouse campaigner chuffed as railway heritage saved from demolition

The old railway roundhouse could have been demolished without consent being sought

Friday, 19th March 2021, 12:54 pm

The Wellingborough Roundhouse, a notable railway landmark, has been saved from demolition after it was given Level 4 status under planning laws.

In January 2020 Wellingborough Civic Society members had highlighted the fate of the large red-brick building, fearing it might be knocked down.

Wellingborough Council Development Meeting Committee members have voted unanimously to locally list the roundhouse, meaning that planning permission would have to be sought to demolish the building.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The Roundhouse in Roundhouse Way, Wellingborough
The Roundhouse in Roundhouse Way, Wellingborough

Now the building cannot be demolished or developed unless planning permission is granted on an application made under Part III of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, as amended.

Bob Townson, Wellingborough Civic Society committee member and campaigner, said: "I'm really chuffed and absolutely delighted.

"There was a real risk that it would be pulled down. It would be great to have it for community use and there are a few ideas like a big sports hall or for residential use."

The roundhouse sits on land on Roundhouse Way - the Finedon Road to Midland Road link - and is part of the Stanton Cross development owned by Vistry Group (formerly Bovis Homes).

The Roundhouse had been used by Totectors as a warehouse

In 2011, attempts were made to get the 60sq m shed listed but the then Secretary of State decided not to list the building under advice from Historic England.

The report said: "The Roundhouse, Mill Road, Wellingborough, also known as the Old Wellingborough Motive Power Station (15A), is too altered to meet the criteria and should not be listed.

"It belongs to the later phases of railway development and, although the Wellingborough roundhouse of 1872-73 retains its plan and external elevations, there have been substantial alterations and all of the internal fittings and equipment have been removed.

"Unfortunately, The Roundhouse known as No. 2 Locomotive Shed, Mill Road, Wellingborough does not have the special architectural and historic interest to merit listing in a national context."

Despite not meeting listed building status, the local listing protects a building as it requires developers to apply to Wellingborough Council before development or demolition.