A FORMER church and Sunday School in Ashton-under-Lyne has been sold for almost 50 per cent more than its asking price.
Now the wait is on to find out what the new owner of the Welsh Wesleyan chapel, on Mill Lane, will do with it.
A frenzy of late bidding saw the auction end on Wednesday, July 19 at £216,000 – after its initial reserve was £150,000.
And it is likely the person who now has the keys will look to either convert the existing structure or build on the area it stands.
As the chapel had already seen planning permission granted to demolish it and build 35 apartments on the site, it was likely to attract interest from developers.
Built in 1877, the building has been empty for some time and is in a state of disrepair. However, some of its current façade may be retained.
Auctioneers Pugh describe it as: “A potential re-development opportunity comprising a substantial former school building on the outskirts of Ashton town centre.
“The property has benefitted from previous planning permission to demolish the existing building and construct a new development housing 35 apartments comprising a mixture of one and two bedrooms, which has since lapsed.”
Tameside Council granted planning permission on December 8, 2006, to convert the property into 23 one-bedroomed and 12 two-bedroomed apartments but nothing was ever done.
And any new buyers have been encouraged to contact the authority of they plan to turn the structure into accommodation.
The Welsh Wesleyan movement was more aligned to the Methodist movement in England, rather than the majority Calvinistic Methodists in the principality.
Now it is under new ownership, the future of the building is in question.