Exciting future for iconic town building

Published Monday 27 November 2017

The new owners of iconic town building The Settling Rooms have unveiled exciting plans for its future – including the restoration of its historical tower clock.

Simon and Hilary Pollard (pictured) are set to relocate their business Kyal Machine Tools Ltd from Stamford in Lincolnshire to The Settling Rooms in Market Harborough having purchased the Grade II listed building from former owners Harborough District Council.

Hilary and Simon Pollard at The Settling Rooms

This week the couple unveiled plans for the building which, as well as being a new head office for their business, will offer space for retail on the upper and lower floors. They also intend to introduce new shrubbery around the building and clean up some of the original external brickwork.

They also have plans for the four‐faced clock in the building’s iconic tower to be working again – and to have the historic mechanism encased in glass to create an eye‐catching showpiece in the entrance foyer.

The couple, who live in The Langtons near Market Harborough, recently used a drone to inspect the roof of the building to get a bird’s eye view of some of the work which needs doing.

Mrs Pollard said: “We fell in love with the building and immediately saw the potential in it. We want to alter it sympathetically and make it lovely again, not just for the companies which will use it, but for the whole town. As it’s a listed building, we’ll be working closely with the council to help us achieve what we set out to.”

Mr Pollard said: “We’ve got the original designs of the building so we’ve got the historical evidence and know what’s changed and what’s been added. This will help us understand what we can and can’t do.”

The recent sale of The Settling Rooms and the recent sale of council‐built homes at St Cuthbert’s Avenue in Great Glen, on a former district council garages site, have netted more than £1million for the taxpayer.

Cllr James Hallam, Harborough District Council’s portfolio holder for finance and assets, said: “We have a duty to maximise the use of our assets on behalf of the taxpayer – whether that is by selling off surplus buildings, making better use of council land, or redeveloping our buildings as we did with The Symington Building. Any income from this helps us continue to provide the services residents want in challenging economic times. I am pleased to hear Mr and Mrs Pollard have exciting plans for The Settling Rooms and wish them much luck in their venture.”

Anyone interested in leasing the building should contact Susan Harrison at SPACE Retail Property Consultants at susan.harrison@space‐rpc.com  or by calling 0345 900 3909.