SEFTON: Landmark to be sold after agreement reached
A Southport landmark looks set to be sold after an agreement was reached between Sefton Council and an unnamed private developer.
The former Pumping Station in Kings Gardens in Southport could be transformed into a restaurant as a result of the deal, which is yet to be signed off by councillors, and details of which have not yet been made public.
The former Pumping Station , which was built in the 1950s, is a split level building, with the ground floor opening out onto the grade II listed Kings Gardens.
It was the subject of a planning application in 2017 to convert the building into a two-floor restaurant at the site with nine parking spaces, although permission lapsed before any work was carried out.
Sefton Council announced it had made the decision to sell the building earlier this year and carried out a marketing campaign which finished in July 2021.
After receving four submissions from interested parties, a preferred bidder was identified with the council entering into negotiations to work out the details of a potential agreement.
A council spokesperson said: “Considerable interest was shown in the building, in no small part thanks to the enthusiasm around Sefton’s ongoing regeneration works and successful Town Deal funding bid.
“As a result of this, Council approval has been obtained to bring the building, which is currently being used as a storage facility, back to life.”
The council says it hopes the proposals will encourage more visitors to the area and provide jobs for local residents.
Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services, Cllr Paulette Lappin, said: “With any asset disposal, the best interests of the community are at heart and we were not prepared to rush the sale of the Pumping Station until we were confident that any redevelopment would ensure both a social and economic boost to the area.
“The Pumping Station is in a prominent location and bringing the building into active public use will complement the already incredible Kings Gardens offer.
“The new owners want to transform the space into a lovely food and drink establishment, which will not only be a great attraction for visitors but also create job opportunities for the people of Southport.”
The plans for use of the building will be subject to statutory approvals, with the council spokesperon adding: “Repurposing the building will involve a significant level of investment from the developer in terms of repair and conversion costs.”
Words: Lisa Rand, Local Democracy Reporter
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