Hallmarks of the end of an era at Hainford salvage yard

An aerial picture of the breakers yard at Hainford Hall in 2011. Picture: SUBMITTED

An aerial picture of the breakers yard at Hainford Hall in 2011. Picture: SUBMITTED

A family-run scrap yard business beside a historic hall is to close after more than 50 years.

Hainford Hall Motor Salvage has owned the site which includes Hainford Hall since the early 1960s.

The hall was once a grand family home but fell into disrepair long before the breakers yard was founded. During the Second World War it was requisitioned by the military and it is thought the army used the rooms as offices. It has lain abandoned since 1948, with the interior littered with junk and cobwebs, and with birds nesting inside.

Peter Smith was 30 years old when he took on the business from his father-in-law in 1972.The 74-year-old built up the salvage yard, which at its peak had more than 800 vehicles on site and employed 14 people. He built a house near the hall to live in with his wife Janet and their two daughters.

But due to his age and having no family who wish to take the business on, he has decided to close it down.

The last few items will be sold off at an auction at the site in Hall Road, Hainford on Thursday, July 21.

And the hall will be put up for sale, in the hope that somebody will renovate it.

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Asked how he felt about closing the business, he said: 'If you had asked me that question a year ago, I would say it was very hard and I was having trouble getting to sleep at night.

'But now I'm happy.

'Otherwise I would have had to leave it to my daughters and wife and it would have been horrendous for them.

'I've had good times here.

'I built a house, brought the family up and had 14 people working here when we were going in our heyday.'

He said he felt somebody would want to renovate the hall, which was built circa 1830.

'It needs somebody with a love of old houses,' he said. 'I probably would have done it when I was in my 30s but it's too big for a family of four.

'I think it will be made into apartments.'

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