BURNLEY’S landmark former county court building has finally been sold – after a bidding war at auction.
The former County Court building in Bankhouse Street was snapped up for £160,000 at Manchester United’s Old Trafford stadium.
The iconic building has remained empty since 1986, but it is now hoped the anonymous buyer will redevelop the impressive building.
Coun. Roger Frost, of Burnley Civic Trust, said: “I am pleased it has finally been sold. It is an important building to Burnley. There are several very significant architectural details which we would like to see preserved. There is some very good stone work like the bell tower and the Royal coat of arms.”
Auctioneers Pugh and Company had said the three storey 12,000sq. ft property with offices was in need of refurbishment but represented a development opportunity.
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.
Deputy Council Leader Coun. Andy Tatchell, Executive Member for Regeneration and Economic Development, said despite the significant work needed, the courthouse may prove attractive to developers with the site bordering the town centre, Burnley College and UCLAN and a proposed student village.
He said: “It is a building of some significance to the town. If it could be restored to its former glory then I would welcome that.
“In an ideal world I would like to see it turned into something that would keep its status within the town and be put to public or private use.
“But we realise that there needs to be considerable renovation carried out on the infrastructure of the building.”