A vacant building on Manor Road in Churchtown could be converted into a new market hall, new retail units and apartments. Photo by Andrew Brown Media

Churchtown Village in Southport will soon welcome a brand new market hall, shops and apartments. 

Proposals for the development, which was submitted by Allied London Ltd, have been granted planning permission by Sefton Council. 

The scheme will be created in a vacant building to the rear of Checkers DIY on Botanic Road in Churchtown Village. 

The existing building would be converted into a market hall and two new retail units, with the reinstatement of the demolished commercial unit to ground floor and the provision of four self-contained flats on the first floor.

It is a further boost to Churchtown, which has recently welcomed a number of new businesses including: The Dram Gift Shop on Botanic Road; the Little Sparks Scandi inspired play space on Botanic Road; Vintage Home on Botanic Road; and DBA School of Dance on Cambridge Road. 

In his report, Sefton Council Chief Planning Officer Derek McKenzie said: “The proposal is acceptable in principle and will preserve the character and appearance of the Conservation Area, while protecting the setting of the neighbouring Listed Buildings. The proposal will not cause any significant harm to the living conditions of the neighbouring properties or in terms of highway safety and flooding. The proposal therefore complies with local policies and is recommended for approval subject to conditions.”

A number of conditions were made, including that the development must be completed within five years and that no work can start until a Highways Construction Management Plan is completed. 

Derek McKenzie added: “The application site lies within Churchtown Local Centre. Given that the application site is within the local centre and seeks for retail premises, as well as residential to the first floor, this is considered to be appropriate to the role of the local centre.

“The use of the premises as retail, residential and market hall with the reinstatement of the previously demolished commercial unit to the rear of the site will not cause harm to the Conservation Area.

“Parking provision for the site is shown as 5 spaces from Manor Road for the retail units and 2 at the rear for the commercial building. 

“The spaces off Manor Road are existing spaces and are shared with the existing adjacent units. No parking is proposed for the residential units and this aspect of the development is considered to be car free. 

“For sites located within local centres, car free development can be acceptable, where a clear case that car-free development is appropriate, demonstrates that there is good access to public transport and local amenities and that highway safety is not compromised. Parking is to be provided for the commercial unit. Given that the site is within the district centre and the applicant has suitably demonstrated its accessibility, providing no off street parking for the residential units is considered acceptable. 

“ Electric Vehicle charging infrastructure is required for all developments with vehicle parking. This can be secured via condition, as can cycle parking facilities for the retail and commercial uses.” 

 

A vacant building on Manor Road in Churchtown could be converted into a new market hall, new retail units and apartments. Photo by Andrew Brown Media

A vacant building on Manor Road in Churchtown could be converted into a new market hall, new retail units and apartments. Photo by Andrew Brown Media

The planning application was submitted by R & R Design Services (UK) Ltd, which said: “The building is part of a complex consisting of the Checkers building which fronts Botanic Road and an additional building fronting Manor Road, which has been linked by a modern cladded roof and linking wall with a roller shutter entrance. 

“This application relates to the whole of the property apart from the existing Checkers Furniture fronting Botanic Road.

“The proposal is to convert the derelict part of the building into three retail units, with a market hall consisting of small start-up units which includes the reinstatement of the partially demolished building to the rear.

“The benefits of this proposal are bringing back into use a recently unused property and securing a sustainable use for the premises. 

“We are proposing a full redevelopment of this unused site which will bring a derelict building back into use, giving it a sustainable future. 

“Two retail units are proposed fronting onto Manor Road giving smaller more accessible units.”

The scheme also calls for the creation of new living accommodation in the building too. 

The application says: “In order to facilitate and increase the revenue generated from the building, we are proposing to add four residential apartments to the first floor of the development.

“This will include the removal of the existing ugly clad flat roof and replacement of the roof with a newer insulated roof which will include raising the height slightly to get a comfortable head height within the proposed apartments. We have provided the amenity space needed by the addition of two balconies to the rear apartments.

“We are also proposing to introduce a market hall or inn-shops type development with small market style stalls which are to encourage start-up businesses to have a physical presence in the area rather than simply being an online business.

“The impact on the Conservation Area from these proposals is minimal and will enhance the area in terms of bringing unused buildings which are currently detrimental to the setting of the local listed buildings back into use and with a more desirable appearance.”

Do you have a story for Stand Up For Southport? Please message Andrew Brown via Facebook here or email me at: mediaandrewbrown@gmail.com 

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