We have been appointed by historic building developer, CZero Developments, to redevelop the Grade II listed St Joseph’s Orphanage site in Preston into city centre family housing.
St Joseph's Orphanage was built on Mount Street, Preston in 1872 for local Roman Catholic girls. In 1877, the St Joseph’s Institute for Sick Poor, also known as the Mount Street Hospital, was added to the site. In 1933 the hospital was extended and in 1939, it became recognised as a training centre for nurses. The hospital closed in 1982, and then operated as care home from the mid-1980s until 2003.
Having stood empty for more than a decade the site has been vulnerable to vandalism and lead theft which has resulted in widespread water ingress and fire damage in some areas. Recent investigations have revealed that the historic buildings are extensively infested with dry rot and large parts of the site are deemed too unsafe to enter.
Work is now underway to clear out and stabilise the buildings in an effort to salvage as much of the historic buildings as possible. The stabilisation work will also allow the team to gain greater access to the site so that they can undertake further condition surveys.
Simon Linford, founder of CZero Developments, said: “We are used to dealing with difficult buildings, but this is about as bad as it gets. However, the buildings’ position in the city, and the very positive attitude of the council, gives us the confidence to tackle the project and do something really good.”
Stephen Anderson, Director at Buttress, added: “The St Joseph’s Orphanage site occupies an important place in the history of Preston. Sadly, after years of exposure to the elements, the fabric has severely deteriorated.
“Our job now is to find a positive solution for the site and its future use. Our proposals will seek to sensitively retain the site’s most important historic elements within the redevelopment so that they are secured for generations to come.”
Discussions with Preston City Council are currently taking place and we are aiming to submit a planning application as soon as possible.