New flats are planned for Horncastle Old Courthouse

The Old Courthouse in Horncastle
The Old Courthouse in Horncastle

One of Horncastle’s most iconic buildings could be transformed into new flats, subject to permission from East Lindsey District Council.

Developers MGPP have submitted an application to convert the Old Courthouse in Louth Road into four residential flats.

Apart from exterior and internal changes to create flats, they want to widen vehicle access to the site, erect gates no more than 2.4m high and establish communal gardens and parking places.

Existing oil tanks would be demolished, along with a boiler house.

The Old Courthouse was built in 1865 but its future has been shrouded in doubt for several months.

It was last utilised as office accommodation by Lincolnshire County Council, which put it on the market last year after staff moved to alternative accommodation in the town.

The building - constructed in the Italianate style - was designed by Charles Reeves, one of the country leading architects in the mid 1800s.

It is listed by English Heritage, which notes many original features have been retained, despite various different uses over the years.

The application would involve securing a change to residential use and it is likely planners will insist on several conditions to safeguard the original features.

Horncastle Civic Society has already written to ELDC, describing the scheme as ‘well presented.’

However, the society does raise some issues and is keen to see trees planted at the site.

Resident Mark Jackson welcomed the proposal for new flats and added: “We’ve been worried about what might happen.

“Someone kept telling up it might be turned into a night club or even a pub. That’s the last thing we wanted.”

Members of Horncastle Town Council’s planning and development committee met last week and gave their full support to the application.