Calls for improvements toderelict Horncastle chapel

Residents in a Horncastle street are calling for a derelict chapel to be either demolished or smartened up after describing it as an '˜eyesore'.

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The chapel is in Queen Street and there are claims someone has been living in it - without the required planning 

There are also allegations the chapel is a target for vandals and a meeting point for gangs of youths.

The matter was discussed at a town council meeting following reports in the News about anti social behaviour in the area.

In that article, police said increased patrols and house visits to concerned residents had stopped the ASB.

Officers also denied anyone was living in the chapel.

However, a resident attended a town council meeting and said the chapel had been inhabited.

He claimed a satellite dish had been erected, along with electrical wiring and curtains.

District councillor Sandra Campbell Wardman said she had visited the chapel at the invitation of the owner.

She stressed she had not seen any evidence of anyone living there but admitted she had not been inside the building.

Coun Campbell Wardman said strict planning regulations were scuppering plans to re-develop the chapel.

She told the meeting the owner had several options, including the possibility of a boxing gym or as flats as part of a residential development.

However, she stressed the owner had been unable to secure an agreement with planning and conservation officers at ELDC.

Coun Campbell Wardman said: “I agree that it (the chapel) is an eyesore.

“It is difficult for the owner and it is not for the want of trying that nothing has happened.

“It would be marvellous if the building could be brought back to life but that is going to be difficult because of all the rules and regulations.”

Coun Cambell-Wardman promised she would discuss the chapel with officers at ELDC.

PCSO Nigel Wass told the council meeting there was no evidence anyone was, or had been, living in the chapel.

He said officers had limited powers to intervene - even if the building was inhabited. He stressed patrols were continuing in Queen Street.

After the meeting, an unnamed resident said the chapel should be demolished.