Restoration work on Lincolnshire home nears completion

Sensitive exterior cleaning of The Laurels care home in Market Deeping is nearing completion after a year of work.

Using specialist equipment, local stonemason Gary Cook used superheated 150°C steam to remove decades of dirt and restore the façade of the old building.

The work is one of the final phases in the year-long restoration project by the building’s owners, Nene Valley Care Homes. Mother and daughter team Touran and Yasamine Watts own three homes in the area – The Laurels, Florence House in Peterborough, and Garden Lodge in nearby Glinton. Once fully restored, the Grade 2 listed building will be home to 19 residents.

Originally built in the early 1800s, The Laurels has changed ownership several times, even since World War II during which it was used for RAF quarters. It was turned into a restaurant and hospitality venue in 1947 but has been a care home since 1986, before being taken over by Touran and Yasamine a year ago.

Gary Cook said: “It’s been a pleasure to help Touran and Yasamine bring this wonderful old building back to life. They both have a vision for taking the property back to its original look and I am excited to help.

“The accumulation of dirt happens very gradually over many years so it’s fantastic to see what the building is supposed to look like in its best condition.

“Even without the work it’s a fine old house. Now, it looks magnificent and it’s somewhere that the owners and the residents are going to be proud of.”

Yasamine Watts said: “It’s been a challenging year making the necessary improvements. The walls and ceiling have crumbled in places and we’ve had to remove several trees which were risking the foundations and structure.

“I’m pleased to say that we’re getting there, though. Gary’s work has been a real landmark moment for us, and we know how much people in the town have noticed the improvements, too.

“Market Deeping is a small place but because of the location of the house we many comments on how the house has played a part in their lives.

“So it’s lovely to be restoring it properly, as well as knowing that the improvements are making a real difference to our residents. We’d like to thank them for their patience and we’re all looking forward to the work being finished.”

Angela Southern, business development director at Stonehealth, who supplied the steam cleaning equipment used, added: “We love to see our upgraded machine being used on projects which benefit the communities in which these buildings are located.”

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