Lincolnshire County Council has chosen the former Market Rasen Railway Station building as the new home for its day care centre for adults with learning disabilities.
The County Council has agreed a long-term lease with the Market Rasen Station Community Project CIC to take over the building and turn it into a community day care centre.
The Council needed a new venue for its day care service, as the previous building failed to meet their current needs.
The Grade II listed former railway station building closed in 1995 and was purchased by Lindum Group at auction in 2014. A Community Interest Company was formed to restore the building and bring it back to use. The group secured a large grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, together with a significant contribution from Lindum and additional funds from the Railway Heritage Trust, Tesco, West Lindsey District Council, the Rotary Club of Market Rasen and Market Rasen Town Council.
The restoration project was completed by Lindum BMS in 2019 and won a National Railway Heritage Award for its partnership work with local organisations including the Town Council, De Aston School, Market Rasen Racecourse and CLIP.
Emma Wardell, chair of the Market Rasen Station Community Project, said: “It is fantastic news that Lincolnshire County Council have decided to use the former railway station building as the new venue for their day care service in Market Rasen.
“We very much welcome the fact that the Council is supporting this local landmark, helping to preserve the history of the town. The new lease agreement has secured the future of this beautifully restored Grade II listed building, creating accessible day care for those that need it and enabling local people to learn about its heritage.”
The Council has plans for day centre clients to gain experience in serving the general public by running a café and for there to be public access to the heritage display area.
Councillor Stephen Bunney, Mayor of Market Rasen, said: “I am delighted that the building is being saved and now going to be used throughout. If you look back around 10 years, it was a redundant, run-down building and we were at risk of losing it, which would have been a shame.
“Now the entire building will be put to use, with the café, which has previously been difficult to lease, will be used for training and to develop skills. I hope the community exhibits will be available for visitors and the local community, so they can fully engage with the history of the building and our town.
“Two of the previous tenants will be staying in Market Rasen as well, which is more good news for our town. It is good news all round.”
Railway station opening, photo courtesy of the Market Rasen Mail