Call to bring old asylum in Gransha into public use

Glenelly/Dennett House, Gransha.
Glenelly/Dennett House, Gransha.

A Strathfoyle community worker and local election candidate has reiterated a call to bring a former asylum in Gransha into community use.

Paul Hughes of Enagh Youth Forum, who is also running as a candidate in the Faughan ward in the forthcoming local council election, said: “This building should be restored.

“An outdoor education activity centre is just what our rural communities along the Faughan valley need. The potential here is unbelievable, if only the city’s planners, Ilex, Derry City Council and the Western Health and Social Care Trust could see the potential for such a project.”

Glenelly/Dennett House is owned by the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety (DHSSPS) and was built in the late 19th century. It was used by Oakgrove College from 1992 to 2007.

A Trust spokesperson told the Sentinel: “The work of the Gransha Project Board is on-going with respect to current land holdings and future service need.

“The Department of Health Social Services and Public Safety and Western Trust continue to work closely with colleagues from the Land and Property Services with respect to such matters.”

The Project Board - comprising representatives of the Health Estates Investment Group (HEIG), Western Trust and Land and Property Services (LPS) - is charged with implementing a strategy for disposal of surplus lands/property at the Gransha site.

Mr Hughes said: “I believe it is vital the city’s built heritage is preserved and I strongly believe that the derelict hospital could be of great benefit to the local community. This building is part of our cultural, social heritage and should be restored for the betterment of all citizens of Derry/Londonderry.”

“I now intend on setting up an online petition over the next few weeks to present to the ‘Disposal Project Board.’

“This building is situated in a great location for outdoor learning and something must be done now to save it before it falls into further disrepair.”