Rossington estate to be restored to former glory

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ONE of Doncaster’s best known listed buildings looks set to be restored to its Victorian former glory - and could become a luxury hotel.

A property developer is on the verge of completing the purchase of Rossington Hall and its estate.

Gary Gee, from Balby, has exchanged contracts and hopes the deal will be completed shortly.

He said: “The most important thing for me is that the building is restored as near as possible to how it was originally when it was first built.

“There are modern features that we would like to remove, many of which were put in when it was a school.After we have done that, we want to look at ways of using it to make sure we can keep it in good condition for the foreseeable future.

“I feel it would make a fantastic venue for weddings and functions. One option may be to use it as a hotel, and that is an option we are looking at.”

As well as looking at restoring the building, he is also looking at restoring the grounds to their Victorian appearance. Doncaster Council’s director of regeneration and environment Peter Dale said: “We have exchanged contracts with the purchaser but the sale is conditional on the grant of planning permission.

“We are hoping to complete the sale of Rossington Hall later in the year.” Mr Gee is buying the hall and the estate. He is also keen that the Northern Racing College remains at its current base within the land.

The college is one of only two in the country which train people for jobs in the horse racing industry.

The future use of the site is likely to require planning permission before it can be pursued.

The current Rossington Hall was built in the 1880s, after a hall occupying the site was destroyed by fire a few years previously.

During World War Two the hall and grounds were under military requisition and the Army was based there.

It was converted to become a school in 1953.

It was run as Rossington Hall Special School for pupils with moderate learning difficulties for more than 50 years until its closure in 2008, despite a campaign from parents of pupils at the school to keep it open.

It was closed as part of a re-organisation of special needs education in the borough.

The Rossington Hall estate was put up for sale by Doncaster Council after the closure. It includes 255 acres, of which 40 per cent is let on a 97-year lease to the Northern Racing College, and a further 40 per cent to other tenants.

Paul Evans, Doncaster Council’s interim director of resources at the time, said in 2008 the estate been advertised on the market for £2.5 million.