New life is set to be breathed into one of Burnley’s most iconic and historic buildings.
The former County Court building in Bankhouse Street could become a complex of “high-end but affordable” apartments according to developer Neil Bradbury.
Rochdale-based Mr Bradbury bought the imposing building, which had lain empty for around 30 years, for £160,000 at auction, but says work to transform the derelict property could reach £1m.
Speaking to the Burnley Express this week he said: “I was at an auction at Old Trafford football ground and didn’t know anything about this building, when a friend suggested I look at it. It seemed a lot of building for not a lot of money, but the interior really is a shell.
“My hope is to create maybe 15 to 20 high-end, affordable apartments there. I have an architect working on it at the moment, and I hope to submit a planning application in the next two or three weeks.”
Workmen are currently on site making the interior safe before proper redevelopment work can start.
Mr Bradbury added: “The inside is a mess at the moment – old plaster is falling off the walls and it looks a state, but I’m excited by the plans. We hope to use a lot of marble, granite and oak which will help make this building beautiful once again.”
The £160,000 fee was more than the auctioneers’ guide price of £100,000, but lower than then the £200,000 estimated by estate agent Trevor Dawson.
The site of the county court was originally a farm and the area was originally known as Bankhouse.
The county court cost £8,000 to build in 1908. When it was built, it also housed offices for the Supervisor of Inland Revenue and Surveyor of Taxes. These latter offices were accessed from Curzon Street whereas the court was accessed from Bankhouse Street.