Grant funds will help with much-needed repairs to historic building in St Ives

The Octagon in St Ives

The Octagon in St Ives - Credit: Archant

The historic Octagon building in St Ives has been given a boost after Huntingdonshire District Council agreed a grant to fund much-needed repairs.

The Octagon was used as an auction ring in the 1940s.

The Octagon was used as an auction ring in the 1940s. - Credit: Archant

At a meeting of the council cabinet, on Thursday, councillors agreed to make £50,000 available to fund repairs and to preserve the building, which is in a state of disrepair.

According to the district council, the Octagon’s woodwork is rotting, two of the walls are covered in ivy and the roof is no longer watertight.

Large areas of paintwork also need attending to and the doors and timber frames are described as being in a “poor condition”.

The Octagon is owned by the district council and is located within the Cattle Market car park in St Ives.

It once served as the cattle market sale ring and, along with the original railings, is the only evidence left of the site’s former use.

The district council said that the building is not listed “but does have protection against demolition as it is in the town’s conservation area”.

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Colin Luscombe, the council’s assessor of estates, said in his report: “The building’s condition is such that repairs are now required to ensure that the structure is made safe, is able to be securely locked and to improve the use of the internal space.”

Mr Luscombe noted that, after a survey of the building, it had been estimated that the cost of repairs would total £40,629.

He added: “However this does not include any potential wood rot or infestation and improving the security to the building by reinforcing the doors, frames or improved locks.

“It would be prudent to budget for this additional cladding, electrical work and security provisions and a budget of £50,000 is considered more appropriate.”