Blackpool offices to be demolished to improve neglected gateway into resort

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Blackpool Council had previously earmarked the site for demolition to extend the existing car park


Decision: The offices in Caunce Street are set to be demolished
Decision: The offices in Caunce Street are set to be demolished (Image: Google)

A property developer has been granted permission to demolish a council-owned block of offices to create more parking in Blackpool town centre.

Steve Webster, who is listed with Companies House as a director of a number of property investment firms, had submitted a planning application to demolish 15 Caunce Street and create a 32-space car park.

Documents submitted with the application reveal that the building is currently owned by Blackpool Council. The adjacent car park and car wash are owned privately by the same owner.

The offices were previously home to Time Telecom Ltd, a now-dissolved limited company which, according to documents filed with Companies House, was run by advertising executive David Goodier and Gary Kay.

An assessment by a council planning officer noted that the authority had already earmarked the site for redevelopment in a bid to create more parking in the town centre as well as to improve the local area.

“The (Talbot & Brunswick Inner Neighbourhood Improvement Area) envisaged a council-led scheme for Caunce Street to emphasise its key role as the main street within the neighbourhood,” the officer stated in the report.

“Improvements will include (but not limited to) short term parking for local businesses; greening with street trees and planting; co-ordinating frontage and boundary treatments. The increased parking provision here accords with that aim.

“The provision of additional car parking here would go some way to compensate for the loss of parking elsewhere in the town centre, including at nearby Talbot Gateway. This would benefit the town centre as a whole.”

The report adds that the local area is “neglected and untidy” and the council would welcome any improvements.

“The Cookson Street/Grosvenor Street area lies between the town centre and the more residential part of the neighbourhood so has a slightly different character with taller buildings and more of a mixture of uses,” the officer states in the report.

“It is one of the gateways into the town centre but its neglected and untidy buildings do not give a good impression to visitors. The council will promote and support any development proposals that come forward that will improve the quality and appearance of the area, particularly those that improve the frontages on to Cookson Street and Grosvenor Street.”

Permission to demolish the building was granted by the council this week and work must begin within three years.