A BLOCK of retirement flats labelled “not fit for purpose” is set to be demolished and could be replaced with new homes.

Lever Gardens, in Lever Street, Little Lever, still contains two occupied properties but housing association Bolton at Home says it has offered the remaining residents housing which “suits their needs”.

The building, constructed in 1971, has suffered from maintenance issues, with local councillor Sean Hornby branding the repair costs for the facility “astronomical”.

He said: “Lever Gardens isn’t fit for purpose any more, it was a poorly designed building.”

The bungalows surrounding Lever Gardens are not set for demolition and will continue to house Bolton at Home tenants.

Gemma Parlby, director of housing services at the housing association, confirmed that Lever Gardens was no longer fit for use and that demolition of the building was planned to take place once the current tenants move out.

“The building is no longer fit-for-purpose and unable to continue providing quality affordable homes for our customers,” she said.

“Still, we understand that leaving a place that has been home isn’t straightforward and moving can be demanding so the decision was taken after careful consideration.

“Our priority has been our customers and their wellbeing. We have given them all the support we can, practically and financially, to make sure there is minimum disruption and to make their move as smooth as possible.

“The majority have already moved and those remaining all now have an offer of a home that meets their needs.”

Plans to replace the building once demolition has been completed have not yet been finalised but Ms Parlby claimed the site would be used for the benefit of other residents in the area.

She said: “We are committed to building new homes and we’ll develop this site based on local community need.

“We believe these steps forward will benefit all concerned now and in the future.”

Lever Gardens is made up of one-bedroom studio flats and contains a lounge for residents, laundry facilities, a garden and a community centre.

To get in touch with Bolton at Home, call 01204 328000.