The building originally consisted of residential, office, and workshop uses and provided employment for blind men making baskets for carrying coal to steam ships. The role of the blind workshops gradually decreased and were shut down in 2006.
Work commenced on Shand House in December 2012 to change the use of the existing approx 45,000 sq ft office building to managed student accommodation inclusive of ground floor Retail Units, light well extension and a link bridge to allow access to all existing 3 floors and to the new 2 storey extension. Inclusive of the basement this would increase the total floor space to circa 75,000sqft
There will be approximately 174 studios with 193 bedrooms. HLN & Bay are employed by the contractor Shaylor Group to deliver the scheme by August 2014 for and on behalf the Mansion Group.