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Clitheroe’s historic workhouse saved from demolition

Councillors in Lancashire have rejected a proposal to demolish Clitheroe workhouse and build 52 homes on the site.

The decision by Ribble Valley Council means the 1873 building is safe - for now

'We are delighted that the planning committee rejected the health authority's plans for demolition', said Alex Baldwin, Conservation Adviser for the Victorian Society. 'We have always argued that the workhouse is part of Clitheroe's heritage and must be retained.'

'We must not be complacent though as the threat of future demolition has not gone away', she added. ‘It remains at risk until plans are approved which incorporate the historic building into a new development.'

East Lancashire Primary Care Trust is selling the land as the community hospital which was based there is set to move into a new £12 million development on an adjacent green field site. As a public body it has a legal obligation to get the best price for the old hospital. It has always maintained that it is not financially viable to develop the site while keeping the original workhouse.

But now local councillors say they want to find a planning solution which retains the 136-year-old building.


The former workhouse was designed in 1873 by JJ Bradshaw of the renowned Bolton architect's practice, Bradshaw, Gass and Hope. It was built using local stone from Coplow Quarry.

In recent years it has been home to the town's community hospital.

The building is not in a conservation area and is not protected by listing, despite a recent application by the Victorian Society. But over the years it has become a landmark building at the Chatburn Road gateway to the town.


Thursday 28 May, 2009

More recent item: A new lease of life for London’s historic concrete house
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