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Spalding Civic Society says former Johnson Hospital in Priory Road should be listed as historic asset

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The former Johnson Hospital should be given new status as a historic asset, according to civic campaigners.

Spalding and District Civic Society has put forward a number of suggestions of sites that should feature on a register of historic locations as part of the Lincolnshire Local
Listing Campaign.

It has highlighted the fact that previous bids to get the Priory Road building onto national heritage lists have so far failed - but that the local route may be a way to safeguard the prominent building.

Former Johnson Hospital, Spalding (50123184)
Former Johnson Hospital, Spalding (50123184)

Chairman John Bland said: “There have been attempts to secure a national listing, but the alterations to the front first floor have been cited as the main reason for refusal. However a local listing would we understand be more likely to succeed and would give a degree of protection to the building.”

The old hospital has been empty since 2009, with many in the town frustrated at the condition developers have allowed it to get in to.

It was opened in 1881 thanks to money left behind by sisters Elizabeth and Mary Ann of the town’s prominent Johnson family.

The Civic Society has welcomed Heritage Lincolnshire’s campaign - saying that Spalding is long overdue a review of buildings that might be suitable for a listing.

As well as the Johnson Hospital, it has nominated Elsom House in Broad Street as one of the few art deco buildings in the town.

Mr Bland also suggested: “Various cottages and houses around the town, either because of their architectural features, or because they are part of a collective group of buildings that contribute towards the character of the setting they are in.”

The Civic Society also wants to put forward Station House in Kings Road - although it is unclear whether this will be possible now South Holland District Council has given approval for it to be demolished.

Station House was most recently used by BT staff - but was once home to senior railway figures. Campaigners feel it should be saved to reflect the prominence the railways once had in Spalding.

- Where deserves a local listing? Email jeremy.ransome@iliffepublishing.co.uk with your views.

'Our historic sites are protected'

Historic sites to the east of South Holland are already protected, according to Long Sutton and District Civic Society.

Members of the group discussed the Lincolnshire Local Listing Campaign - but said they felt there was nowhere suitable to be added from its part of the district, with its historic assets covered by listings and conservation areas.

Spokesman Tim Machin said: “20, 30 or 40 years of local action has brought about the protection of pretty much all the buildings we want to see protected.”

He said that adding protection for the Bridge Hotel in Sutton Bridge would be like ‘shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted’.

It is thought that several developers are interested in this site and are awaiting the end of a lengthy probate process to make a move.

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