The future of construction work at the long-time home of the Swindon Advertiser appears uncertain after the contractors working on it went out of business.

The newspaper moved out of its former home on Victoria Road, Old Town in 2018 to a new site in Dorcan. 

Since then, work has been underway by new owners of the land and contractors Chris James Construction to transform Newspaper House into a block of flats while retaining the Grade-II listed frontage. 

But locals say that work appears to have stalled ever since Chris James Construction was liquidated as a company, with mystery surrounding the redevelopment of the historic Victorian building. 

Swindon Advertiser: How things looked earlier this monthHow things looked earlier this month (Image: Newsquest)

One resident, who wished not be be named, said: "I can't remember the last time I saw anything happening there, now that I think about it.

"And even before that when there was something going on it never seemed to be a whole lot, and nothing ever seemed to change."

Another resident added: "I went recently to have a look at what had changed since the last time I looked, and the answer was not a lot."

In February 2020, Chris James Construction got the green light to turn part of the structure into 19 flats.

The plans show nine single-bed flats and one two-bed apartment will be constructed on the first floor with six single and three two-bed flats on the second floor.

A small part of the ground floor will be converted into an entrance lobby for the flats upstairs.

Nearby, what used to be an old car park and storage area next to The Roaring Donkey pub has been turned into a handful of new houses.

The area around Little London and Church Road in Old Town now includes 12 properties known as Chapel Corner.

Swindon Advertiser: Another image of the current state of the developmentAnother image of the current state of the development (Image: Newsquest)Storage space formerly used by the Adver was demolished to make way for the small housing estate.

Altogether, there are four one-bedroom apartments, two two-bedroom flats, four two-bedroom townhouses, and two converted one-bedroom cottages, each with a designated parking space.

In April, Tom Kiely was appointed as company director and around that time amendments to the plans to build flats and houses on the site of the Swindon Advertiser’s old reel store and car park had been successfully revised and approved by Swindon Borough Council

But Companies House shows that a month later the business was wound up and now no longer exists. 

Attempts have been made to contact Tom Kiely, but the Adver has not received a response.