Over its lifetime 1 Horse Market has been many things before evolving into Horse Market B&B.
Originally the town’s police station with 2 cells and Court House, it has also been the Community Centre, Cub, Brownie and Scout Hall, a nursery, a hairdresser, an art gallery and finally a youth centre. Known then as Center 5.
A local woman, Margaret Caruthers, remembers living at the Police house and her brother, Nigel Caruthers, being born here. Margaret says the building ended its life as a police station in 1964 when her family moved to the brand new police house/station on New Road.
The building was owned by Cumbria County Council and sold at auction at the Manchester United ground on the 2nd December 2011 to Tim and Lindsey Hall.
With the invaluable help of a local architect, David Hacking, change of use from a commercial building and planning approval to make a four bedroom house and a completely separate two bedroom apartment over the garages was obtained. Then with great vision, Lindsey designed and project managed the work on the house, transforming it into the wonderful home it is today.
Over 300 tons of rubble was removed from the house during the renovation – walls, ceilings and floors were demolished. The staircase that originally led from the police station (guest sitting room) to the Magistrates’ quiet room (The Panelled Bedroom) was moved to the central part of the house to create the hallway. There was no 2nd floor prior to the renovations. Again with inspiration, the lovely loft bedroom was created. The loft bathroom was formed from what was the area in the eaves that is normally only part of a building ’s roof space.
The cellar was discovered during the build and after a week of excavation, all the cobbles that make up the garden patio were found in the cellar. One of the cell windows was fitted over the coal shoot to give light.
Locals say that in one corner of the cellar is the tunnel that leads to the cellar of the Sun Hotel. Pre the courthouse, trials were held in The Sun and the prisoners were taken from there to the police station via the underground tunnel.
When the house was the youth centre – apparently the tuck shop was in the cellar and many remember it is where their pennies would be exchanged for chocolate.