Social housing development proposed for warehouse

A ‘SEVERELY dilapidated’ Ashton building that has laid empty for nine years will be transformed into 43 apartments providing social housing is planning permission is granted.

The former site of JT Griffiths and Co, which was a mattress ticking warehouse on Stockport Road, is wanted to be transformed by Infinity Property Investing, who would then work with Express Housing.

And the applicants feel the introduction of the one bedroomed properties, which would be used by vulnerable adults and be staffed, would help ease a mounting crisis, as well as bring new life to an area.

A statement supporting the application to Tameside Council states: “The social housing model is being placed under mounting pressure across Greater Manchester as the demand for adequate, safe and accessible accommodation increases.

The former site of JT Griffiths and Co | Photo by Gemma Carter

“There has already been an overwhelming expression of interest in leasing this property once developed from housing providers who have earned their reputation in the borough as highly regarded providers of bespoke support to vulnerable adults.

“As of January 2021, 97,000 households in Greater Manchester were awaiting a social home. 26,000 of these were identified in priority need for social rented homes and over 2,000 households were in temporary accommodation, awaiting permanent placement.

“The objectives of this proposed development is, therefore, to alleviate this mounting housing shortage whilst bringing back into a use a derelict property in the heart of Ashton-Under-Lyne.”

Infinity says it had a number of social housing providers and charities contact the with a view to managing the scheme.

However, Express Housing, which partners with various social housing groups and charities in Tameside and Oldham to provide individuals not only with housing but with the support they need to be able to maintain their tenancy and improve their personal circumstances, will take it on.

Each of the 43 apartments will have an open plan kitchen/lounge area, a separate bedroom, bathroom, and private storage area.

And while those living there will have an assured tenancy agreement, they will still be offered supervision and assistance when required through a staffed concierge’s office located at the entrance to the building.

Experienced housing officers will work alongside the residents on a regular basis to support and assist them on the path to independent living.

The building has been empty since JT Griffiths moved to larger premises in Stockport in 2013 and documents described its condition in stark terms.

They add: “Having been neglected on a long-term basis by the previous landowner, the structure has fallen victim to vandalism and dilapidation, and is currently in a severe state of disrepair.

“What remains of the building is severely dilapidated, posing an unnecessary security risk to neighbouring residential properties, and undermining the quality and value of the area.

“The exterior appearance of the building has an undesirable impact on the context and character of its immediate surroundings.

“The front gable wall visible from Stockport Road has well-established invader plant species growing from within the double-leaf wall which compromises the structural integrity of the building.”

If planning permission is granted, two single storey outbuildings, described as being in ‘especially poor condition’ will be demolished to accommodate three parking spaces.

And developers believe it will benefit the area if it is given the go ahead, saying: “Being in a mixed-use area comprising of residential and retail units, the building has immense potential.
“Neglect and abandonment have resulted in the property falling into a disrepair, making it unusable and unsafe for occupation of any kind.

“The proposed redevelopment of the building for residential use is sympathetic to the feel of the area.”

Tameside Council’s Speakers Panel (Planning) committee will decided whether to grant or refuse planning permission.

2 Replies to “Social housing development proposed for warehouse”

  1. This is absolutely brilliant and at time when, First Choice Homes Oldham have just demolished yet more desperately needed housing, “I have absolutely zero idea why they knocked Crossbank and Summervale House down. There must’ve been between 300-500 people in there and as you say, where the hell are they going to go now? They’re replacing both tower blocks with 88 residences. Completely clueless.” Ashton is once again leading the way forward.

    Well done to everyone involved.

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