The identity of the new owner of Spalding Magistrates Court is still a mystery, nearly two weeks after its sale was finally confirmed.
A Government spokesman confirmed that it was “proceeding” with an offer made by a “ private buyer” for the courthouse in Sheep Market, despite attempts by a Spalding charity to save it for community use.
The Spalding Guardian revealed last week that trustees for Spalding Court House Charity, set up in March to try and buy the building before turning it into a “community asset”, had been told by Ministry of Justice officials that its bid for the court had failed.
However, the identity of the court’s new owner is still unknown and Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS), the Ministry of Justice department dealing with the court sale, has stayed tight-lipped about the successful bidder’s name.
An HMCTS spokesman said: “We are proceeding with a financial offer from a private buyer and HMCTS will always seek the best value for the taxpayer.”
The spokesman added that “commercial confidentiality” prevented HMCTS from giving any details about who had bid for the court, along with how much had been offered.
We are proceeding with a financial offer from a private buyer and HMCTS will always seek the best value for the taxpayerHer Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service
Built in 1843, the grade-II listed court has stood empty since January 2014 and Ministry of Justice figures estimated its value at £200,000, with the cost of upgrading it put at more than £300,000.
Charity in setback after court failure