Landmark Town Hall is demolished
9:00am Wednesday 6th February 2013 in News
KEARSLEY Town Hall has been bulldozed following months of confusion about the future of the building.
Plans to demolish the building were approved by Bolton Council in November but it was only knocked down last week.
All that remains of the former landmark are piles of rubble at the site in Bolton Road.
Stephen Tonge, of Station Road, Kearlsey, said: “They took it down quite slowly but now it is just a mass of rubble. It’s sad really to see the demise of the building and that’s the pretty well catalogued opinion of residents.
“It was very mis-judged to let it go to rack and ruin. It’s very sad that more could not have been made of it, especially when you can see Farnworth Town Hall down the road being modified and restored.”
The demolition marks almost a year since the hall was sold at auction for £138,000.
Harry Jackson, of Harry Jackson Surveyors Ltd in Farnworth Retail Park, Wellington Street, was revealed as the owner of the building when neighbours paid to see his name on the land register.
The demolition application said the building should be knocked down because it was in a “dangerous and dilapidated condition”.
Foxx Limited Consulting Civil and Structural Engineers, which carried out a structural appraisal, said the roof and part of the second floor had suffered from extensive fire damage and dry rot was found throughout the building.
Renovation work was “impractical and uneconomic” because of the building’s condition.
Bolton Civic Trust chairman, Brian Tetlow, said: “It was a building which should have been put to use without being neglected for so long. It was a landmark building in Kearlsey and it meant a lot to the people of Kearsley and could have been put to use for their benefit.”
Kearsley Town Hall, which is thought to have been built in the late 1800s, had been a hotspot for vandals and anti-social behaviour since it became empty more than three years ago.
It was formerly used by the probation service and looked set to be transformed into offices after Hamill Investments was granted planning permission last year but the deal fell through following lengthy negotiations.