Bass Maltings Sleaford August 2015

Derelict Places

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mockney reject

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The History


The Bass Maltings were opened fully in 1905 by Bass Ratcliff & Grettons chief Engineer and Architect Herbert A Couchman; they are considered Couchmans best work. The frontage of the building spans nearly 1,000 feet in length and are made entirely of brick. The original design for the maltings complex was twice as large, with a further 8 malt houses to the south mirroring the current 8 blocks. Couchman was known for his meticulous standards and personally oversaw the entire project. 60 houses were built from the bricks he rejected, testimony to his high standards.

The Maltings at Sleaford was an attempt to centralise malt production in an efficient way, making use of economies of scale and steam power for moving barley around the site. For the first few decades the site was able to produce malt far cheaper than any other, however with the advent of pneumatic malting in the 1940-50s, Sleaford fell into decline, ceasing as a Maltings in 1959.

A fire severely damaged the buildings in 1974, though it remained structurally intact. In the 1970s, G.W. Padley (Property) Ltd. bought the site and used it to rear chickens. The buildings were abandoned again in the 1990s, with further damage sustained in a fire in 2014.

The Explore

Another one in the day of many explores with @slayaaa in fact for some reason we stopped at Stamford, after both thinking it was there, we soon realised after a Google it was in fact in Sleaford Doh! So after visiting Melton Mowbray we headed to Sleaford.

We found it quite easily, not like it’s hard to miss, we just ended up on the wrong side of the railway track.

Once we parked up on the posh estate nearby we made our way over the fence and into the yard. Only to spot what we thought was a security van and for us to jump the fence to get out again. We then wandered around the outside found another entrance point and went it. We where gobsmacked by the sheer size of the place. It’s hard to believe that places of this size still remain unloved. Yeah I know we see them all the time but it’s still mad.

Once inside we knew we were after the water tower, our first of two on this particular day. We headed into the first building and made our way to the top to grab some pics and explore what the buildings where like. Each one being pretty much the same as the next. We climbed up level after level until we where sat at the top just having a look around and then we heard heavy foot steps. Oh pants Secca already!!
We hid and waited and heard two lots of footsteps and some voices, as they reached our level it turned out to be a couple of local stoned kids. One more so than the other and they offered to take us through the buildings and into the tower. The next ten minutes where a high up walk through some real shady bits of the mill where at one point we where balancing along an RSJ that wobbled and awful lot.

Eventually we made it to the tower and climbed up, we sat on the top snapping away and chatting to these two kids, who told us that the mill is eventually being flattened for a new Tesco’s or Sainsbury’s, such a shame really as it has huge potential for redevelopment into flats or similar. The more stoned of the two kids eventually became overly obnoxious to the point he was pissing us both off, so we made our excuses and left. But not before the told us to check out Rauceby asylum on the way out of Sleaford, that wasn’t bad but very very trashed. I may report Rauceby at a later date if I feel it’s worth it.


Enjoy the pics


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krela

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Great photos. This is genuinely one of my favourite above ground places, it's so unique. I'll be gutted if it does get torn down. Thanks for posting your take on it.
 

mookster

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No chance of them ever being torn down as the entire site is listed at Grade II*, it's of extremely high national importance. The conversion plans were put on hold this year.
 

krela

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No chance of them ever being torn down as the entire site is listed at Grade II*, it's of extremely high national importance. The conversion plans were put on hold this year.

As I mentioned on a different thread earlier, listing (Grade II* or otherwise) offers no guarantee of safety for any building. Half the time all it means is buildings are left to rot beyond economic repair then torn down for safety reasons, it happens a lot - around 100 listed buildings a year are demolished with many more deteriorating beyond realistic repair.

The stronger the listing grade the more likely it is to happen, as the listing severely limits realistic reuse for the buildings and massively increases restoration/ redevelopment costs, meaning conversion plans do tend to come and go, be put on hold and ultimately never happen.
 
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mookster

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As I mentioned on a different thread earlier, listing (Grade II* or otherwise) offers no guarantee of safety for any building. Half the time all it means is buildings are left to rot beyond economic repair then torn down for safety reasons, it happens a lot - around 100 listed buildings a year are demolished with many more deteriorating beyond realistic repair.

The stronger the listing grade the more likely it is to happen, as the listing severely limits realistic reuse for the buildings and massively increases restoration/ redevelopment costs, meaning conversion plans do tend to come and go, be put on hold and ultimately never happen.

That is true sadly. There have been all sorts of grants awarded towards the conversion of this place however so one would like to think it will have some kind of future.
 

Bones out

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Excellent stuff, and a different take on the spiral staircase, had to look twice as I thought it was not there!
 

BlackRhino

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As I mentioned on a different thread earlier, listing (Grade II* or otherwise) offers no guarantee of safety for any building. Half the time all it means is buildings are left to rot beyond economic repair then torn down for safety reasons, it happens a lot - around 100 listed buildings a year are demolished with many more deteriorating beyond realistic repair.

The stronger the listing grade the more likely it is to happen, as the listing severely limits realistic reuse for the buildings and massively increases restoration/ redevelopment costs, meaning conversion plans do tend to come and go, be put on hold and ultimately never happen.
Beautiful buildings. The issue imho is the the only people who can afford these buildings are wealthy developers who don’t care about them but just want to maximise profits. The people who care about them can’t afford to sit on them for years while cutting through the red tape.
I’ve been looking at a small textile mill this week, a developer has ‘played’ the planning department (well done him) on a master plan for a village, developed all the residential sites and is now selling in the proposed commercial stuff which was agreed based on growing the economy of the area.
We’d love to buy it but would have to sell our home and can’t endure living in a caravan for years while we battle for planning to ultimately save the building, restore it and even re-instate the water wheel.
 

Hayman

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Beautiful buildings. The issue imho is the the only people who can afford these buildings are wealthy developers who don’t care about them but just want to maximise profits. The people who care about them can’t afford to sit on them for years while cutting through the red tape.
I’ve been looking at a small textile mill this week, a developer has ‘played’ the planning department (well done him) on a master plan for a village, developed all the residential sites and is now selling in the proposed commercial stuff which was agreed based on growing the economy of the area.
We’d love to buy it but would have to sell our home and can’t endure living in a caravan for years while we battle for planning to ultimately save the building, restore it and even re-instate the water wheel.
Dereliction by default?
 

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