A scheme to convert a historic town centre building into new flats and bedsits will need to ensure there is enough 'living space'. 

Under the proposals, a former office on Wood Street, just off Bradshawgate in the town centre, will be converted into four flats and two bedsits.

Cllr Richard Silvester, who represents the Queens Park and Central area, said that this could be a positive development as long the new flats meet certain conditions.

He said: “I don’t have any problem with the building being turned into flats as its now empty as long as they meet the minimum living space requirements.

“There was a similar plan not far away on Bark Street for new flats in the basement which was refused because planning officers felt that there was not enough space.

The Bolton News: The plans will be considered by Bolton CouncilThe plans will be considered by Bolton Council (Image: G&T Architecture)

He added: “If residents are subjected to unacceptable living standards or the minimum space standards are not being adhered to, then quite rightly such applications should be refused.

“If applications are compliant and residents have the space required and the living standard is good quality, then I see no reason why former office premises which are standing empty, should not be converted into residential dwellings and flats.”

The Grade II listed building had previously been used as an office space on the ground, first and second floors.

Under the plans, as well as creating the new housing space, there will also  be a reinstated entrance door installed around the back which will open out directly into the stairwell.

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Cllr Silvester, who also sits as Bolton Council’s cabinet member for climate change and the environment, said any new developments would have to take the buildings historic status into account.

He said: “On Wood Street it’s a listed building so the developers will also need to meet the requirements there but again as long as these are met they I don’t see any problem with it.”

He added: “This is the way things are progressing in Bolton town centre and there are likely to be more planning applications in future for new flats in empty offices.”

The plans were put before Bolton Council on Thursday October 5 and will be open for neighbourhood consultations until Thursday October 26.

The authority will then aim to make a decision by Thursday November 30.