The developer behind plans to breathe new life into Ulverston’s derelict brewery site has been urged to ‘be careful how this is done’.
The Old Brewery in Ulverston was sold to businessman Matthew Mayvers last year after remaining vacant for nearly 30 years.
A planning application has been submitted to South Lakeland District Council by Mr Mayvers for the demolition of a joiners workshop and barn, erection of four terraced dwellings, a new external staircase to the first floor flat over a pub, formation of window and door openings in the pub and existing offices, and removal of existing chimneys.
At a full meeting of Ulverston Town Council, Councillor Colin Pickthall said he hoped that the development would be a success but expressed concern about work at the site.
He said: “We have waited for years for the site to be sorted out as it’s a derelict mess but it’s in a conservation area and some of the particular features being removed are concerning.
“We welcome it very much in general and hope to influence the details, such as the chimney pots that appear to have been taken away.
“We believe we should have a little more say and time to say it.”
Councillor Bob Brown, was worried about the pace of change to the building and wanted to make sure development was ‘sympathetic’.
He said: “The builder needs to be careful how this is done.
“However, the Brewery Street renovations will be good, but only if the builder is sympathetic and that reasonably priced housing comes from this to keep people in town.”
Mr Mayvers said he had taken all necessary steps before starting work.
“I’m really pleased with the enthusiasm they have for the project and their willingness for it to succeed,” he said.
“I think that all work on site that is being carried out was granted in line with a permitted development order which has not, unfortunately, involved the town council directly.
“Of course, the project will have an element of affordable rentals which will be discussed with the district council team.
“We are working both with South Lakeland District Council and the town council to keep them up to date with the progress on site.”
Peter Lowe, chairman of Ulverston and District Civic Society, said he hoped development would not result in ‘loss of its character’.
Ulverston Town Council asked SLDC to ensure that further work on the site must be subject to full planning permission and decided by the planning committee.
They added: “It is critical that works are sympathetic to this historic building within a conservation area and that full permission from SLDC as the planning authority is received for all aspects of the work.
“It was also recommended that the developer be requested to come to the March town council meeting and discuss the plans in a public setting.”
Mr Mayvers has indicated that he will attend.
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