Mason Moore | Hinckley Reporter | 29 May 2021
RESTORATION WORKS have been completed on a Grade II* listed underground Victorian Ice House in Bouskell Park in Blaby, restoring it back to its former glory.
The restoration works on the hidden and underground Blaby Ice House started last September, where a new retaining structure was installed, as well as a rebuilt tunnel entrance, new dome, and new cover.
Landscaping of the area, signage, and railings were all further included as a part of the extensive redevelopment project.
It was constructed in 1843 and was used as a form of early refrigeration by Blaby Hall residents to store their ice to preserve food and cool drinks.
£156,000 of the £173,000 project was supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, whilst the rest of the funding came from the District Council.
Workers on the project overcame a handful of obstacles they faced whilst working on structure – including the pandemic, issues with the dome, and continued difficult weather.
South Leicestershire’s Member of Parliament, Alberto Costa (CON), officially opened the structure alongside Councillors Terry Richardson and Sharon Coe.
Tours of the Ice House are set to start in mid-June.
Inside tours are available to book online by doing so on the official Visit Blaby website, by clicking here.
A community dig will be held in the last week of June in partnership with the University of Leicester’s Archaeological Services Team in a Covid-safe manner to ensure it is as safe as possible.
Cllr. Sharon Coe has explained that the restoration was a part of the Tourism initiative for the Blaby District, and that the Council ‘cannot wait’ to show the structure to residents and visitors.
She said: “We have been so excited to follow this project through from the initial Heritage Lottery Fund award to our now-completed Ice House.
“Restoring the Ice House is part of our Tourism initiative to showcase Blaby District is a great place to live, work and visit, and a huge amount of work has gone into restoring the Ice House to its former glory.
“We cannot wait to show the Ice House to both residents and visitors to the district as well as local schoolchildren.”