YMCA receives lease to Wellington's former New College building

A former college building in Wellington which is being transformed into new housing for young people has been handed over to the YMCA Wellington.

YMCA receives lease to Wellington's former New College building

The grade II listed former girls’ high school building at the New College site on King Street, which was built in 1911-1912, is being repurposed to create 28 one-bedroom apartments and renovation will ensure the building’s splendour is retained.

Work started on the £3.9 million project in March 2023 and MORRO Partnerships is delivering the refurbishment programme.

The building has now officially been handed over to YMCA who will manage the housing project once completed in April 2024.

Telford & Wrekin Council acquired the building in 2019 as part of the former New College site and has provided funding to support the building's refurbishment and create the new apartments. 

The accommodation is designed as transitional accommodation for those who are moving on from supported housing where they can manage on their own and learn to live independently.

It also includes communal facilities including a training room, laundry, staff housing management office, shared waste and recycling facilities, secure cycle storage, charging points and communal garden areas.  

The refurbishment programme is the first phase of the wider regeneration of the former New College site, a key gateway location into Wellington.

Councillor Lee Carter (Lab), Telford & Wrekin Council’s Cabinet Member for Place (the Economy & Neighbourhood Services) said: “We’re pleased to see work on this building progressing well and YMCA taking on the lease to manage the building.

“This project is restoring a Grade II listed building at the former New College site but also creating high quality transitional accommodation to support young people who find themselves homeless in our community.”

Chris Timmins, Manager Director at MORRO, said: “It has been an enriching experience to deliver a project that we know is so important to the Telford community. 

“At MORRO we are passionate about being better community and better future makers, so look forward to seeing this development thriving in a great area and its residents integrating into such a welcoming community. 

“Our partnership with YMCA Blackburn has helped to deliver a fantastic renovation and know that the development will be transformed into fantastic, high-quality homes.”

Mandie Mulloy, CEO of YMCA Wellington, said: “YMCA Wellington have been working towards obtaining move on accommodation for the last nine years and next year’s opening of this building marks a new chapter for us in our almost 165 years of service to people in the local area. 

“Following the very difficult time post Covid when lots of new builds and refurbishments were put on hold due to interest rate and material cost increases, we are thrilled to have been able to keep moving with this development.  

“This is such an exciting time for YMCA Wellington, in just six months time we will be able to move young people from our supported housing to this new development which allow them to progress to the next stage of their journey.

“We are so incredibly thankful to all our partners who have made the project possible.”

Photo: Left-right: Rob Payton MORRO Partnerships Construction Manager, Councillor Angela McClements, Ward Member for Arleston & College, Councillor Lee Carter, Telford & Wrekin Council’s Cabinet Member for Place (the Economy & Neighbourhood Services), Mandie Mulloy, CEO of YMCA Wellington, and Simon Thomson, MORRO Partnerships Site Manager.