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Thursday, 23 October 2014

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£25,000 revamp for eyesore Barrow building to help attract buyer

A PROMINENT Barrow building which has become an eyesore is to benefit from up to £25,000 of investment to help attract a buyer.

Barrow Borough Council bought the empty 166 Rawlinson Street a number of years ago because of its standout location on the junction with Buccleuch Street. But due to its poor condition, the council has not been able to find a buyer or use it for council purposes.

In a report to go before the executive committee tomorrow, executive director Phil Huck has recommended that up to £25,000 should be offered as an incentive for prospective buyers.

It would be included in an existing scheme to revamp 287 to 329 Rawlinson Street with fresh frontages, drainpipes, new back walls and gates and new PVC doors and windows.

Another commercial premises, 285 Rawlinson Street, is also set to be added to the work plan. It is all part of the wider Housing Market Renewal Programme to help regenerate the north central Barrow area.

Historically, 166 Rawlinson Street’s uses have included a furniture dealership and sports memorabilia shop. It still bears the sign saying Fell’s Furniture Broker and General Dealer.

Councillor Brendan Sweeney, deputy council leader, said: “It’s quite distinctive on the junction there. We have taller buildings like this on the junctions, such as the pubs, and we don’t really want to see it knocked down and left as an empty space.

“The reason we originally bought it was to avoid that happening. We hoped to have moved it by now, so we need to try and do a bit more. A few people have looked at it and said it needs a lot doing to it. But hopefully this way we’ll get it moved on.”

The council has been carrying out the North Central Barrow Renewal Area project since 2010. A £1.6m programme of work, which started in January last year, was finished earlier this year, giving a facelift to homes in Thwaite, Whitehead, Brewery, Arnside, Lindal, Silverdale, Lord and Harrison streets.

Cllr Sweeney said: “If you look at the work that’s been done in places like Silverdale Street, Lord Street and Harrison Street, it’s absolutely fabulous and it’s something we want to do more of, as and when we get the money.”

The latest £25,000 will come from the council’s capital programme, triggered by the terms of its private sector housing assistance policy.

Mr Huck said: “During the development of the project, it has become clear that to maximise its impact, two further properties should be included – 285 and 166 Rawlinson Street. These are both prominent corner properties which have a high impact on the streetscape in this area.”

Have your say

Spot on Graeme, The old Jones' Greengrocers shop has been boarded up for years. The condition is becoming worse, and you can see sunlight right through the elevation brickwork on Settle Street.
Mark my words....one day a strong gust of wind will bring the whole side down onto Settle Street...hopefully not killing anyone in the process.
The back of the property is a disgrace too with some bricks on the outside leaf completely disintegrated. The inside is infested with pigeons and you can regularly see hordes of flies in the windows feasting on the dead birds.
The property is an absolute disgrace to the area, and the council should use it's powers to purchase it and sell it on CHEAPLY to someone prepared to renovate it.....or just knock the dump down.

Posted by Timberrrrrr. on 29 July 2014 at 19:40

How about putting the money towards the Barrow to Ulverston bus route that is being axed from Sept this year because of funding, it's a service not a profit making service, absolutely disgraceful

Posted by Fedup on 29 July 2014 at 18:54

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