Story by Richard Belbin
Spital Hill Works, latterly known as Lion Works or Lyon Works, has been included on a list of sites ‘at risk’ of being lost forever unless they can be brought back into use in the next year. The former metal edged tool factory was built by John Sorby & Sons in the late 18th Century, and was listed in 1995.
A listed building gains the accreditation because it is identified as having special architectural or historic interest and may be important due to its age or condition. The main building was occupied by community projects, but has been empty for a number of years and has become rather run down.
Planning applications to turn it into one bed studios have come to nothing. Because of the building‘s Grade II listed status, the council can only allow minimal changes to the brick exterior.
The applicants have to pay careful consideration to the rules on changes to historic buildings.