A Grade II heritage-listed building in Watford could be restored.

A Historic England grant has paid for an extensive survey of Little Cassiobury house, which will be used to inform a possible restoration and repair project.

The compact red brick mansion house was built in the late 17th century as an addition to the Cassiobury Estate.

It remained under the ownership of the Essex family until the Cassiobury Estate was sold in 1922 following the death of the 7th Earl of Essex.

After it changed hands a number of times, Hertfordshire County Council purchased Little Cassiobury in 1938 and still owns it today.

Elected Mayor Dorothy Thornhill said: “Little Cassiobury is an iconic part of Watford’s history and heritage and we want to see it preserved and brought back to active use.

“We only have three Grade II*buildings in Watford, including Little Cassiobury, so they are very important to us.

“The survey is the first step in understanding the work that will be required for Little Cassiobury. It also gives us much more understanding of its history. The building has undergone significant physical change over the years and peeling back the layers has been quite exciting.

“With the completion of the survey work, we can now start planning how best to preserve Little Cassiobury for future use.”

Watford has Heritage Lottery Funding for a number of important projects aimed at conserving and enhancing the town’s heritage.

In 2013, Watford Borough Council was successful in gaining Heritage Lottery Funding to repair and restore several listed tombstones in St Mary’s churchyard.

Watford Museum was recently awarded a development grant of £175,800 to enable project plans for a large-scale refurbishment to progress before an application for the full grant of £1,741,100 is submitted at a later date.

A £6.6m major restoration of Cassiobury Park is also currently in progress.