Following completion of the new Civic Centre in March 1962, the Town Clerk and his staff moved there, having been at Pounds House since 1941. Eighteen months later, after lengthy discussions, work started in August 1963 to convert the house into a social and cultural centre. It included replacing the temporary roof above the south part of the house which had been there since [date needed].
When completed in July 1964, there was a branch library and two meeting rooms on the first floor, and a café and space for a children’s welfare clinic on the ground floor. There were also two flatlets for the use of staff. The house was painted inside in pastel shades with pale lemon walls in the hall, and pink in the café and children’s clinic. All the main rooms had Wedgwood blue ceilings with the plaster work picked out in white.
The café opened onto the arcaded porch and south terrace where there were small tables with sun umbrellas.
This popular time in the house’s history ended abruptly on 7th March 1991 when [part of the house] caught fire. The house was restored and it re-opened in September 1992. However, the library had been moved into Hope Baptist Church Hall by then and, although Pounds House remained a popular place for receptions, its other uses gradually changed to include offices and a hearing and sight centre.
The catering business ended in [date needed] and the house’s last occupants were the Plymouth Excellence Cluster, a service which supports children’s social, emotional and mental health needs. They left in December 2018 and the house has been kept in care and maintenance to the present time.
The stable block
After the war, groundsmen working in the park used parts of the stable block to store their tools and no doubt have an occasional cup of tea. In 1991, Peverell Park Surgery applied to move their practice into the middle and south wings of the stables, the north wing having already been taken as an electricity sub-station. In recommending approval, the Devon County Engineer and Planning Officer expressed his concern at the lack of adequate car parking spaces, a problem which has only grown worse.