A historic pub that was abandoned sparking fears it could become a magnet for crime and disorder is set to be “looked at again" as police step up patrol near the venue.

The Shakespeare Pub, on Glynn Street in Farnworth, has been closed for several years and was put up for auction in July 2022.

But the building remains vacant and this was raised as a cause for concern when police recently held a questions and answers event for people in the community.

Cllr Nadeem Ayub, of Farnworth North, said: “The Shakespeare has been part and parcel of Farnworth for a long time now but unfortunately it has also been abandoned for a long time as well.

“It’s been neglected and what we really need is for someone to come in, invest some money and bring it back to life because we know it has the potential to be a really great resource again for the community.”

The Bolton News: Damaged cars have been left behind the pubDamaged cars have been left behind the pub (Image: Newsquest)

He added: “In its current state it’s become potentially hazardous, especially for younger people, and that really isn’t acceptable.”

Last September concerns were raised about windows being broken at the pub, which is nearly 100 years old and a Grade II listed building, and about damaged cars being parked nearby.

But over the past month people in the area have also said they were worried that the abandoned space could become a centre for crime and drug use.

This was raised as part of an online engagement event hosted by Greater Manchester Police’s Bolton South Neighbourhood Policing Team.

The Bolton News: The pub is a historic listed buildingThe pub is a historic listed building (Image: Newsquest)

In response, representatives say that they hope the council will look at what can be done with the building.

A spokesman for GMP Bolton South said: "I am aware that there have been previous issues with individuals trespassing at the location. I will ask the local Farnworth Neighbourhood Team to give the location some passing attention and take positive action if anyone is located inside the building.

"I will also ask the team to link in with our partners to see what the plan is for the property and to ensure that the building is properly secured to prevent any future issues."

Cllr Sue Haworth, also of Farnworth North, said: “Many local residents love the historic buildings in their area and will remember that when this building went to auction in 2022 potential buyers were keenly advised to make contact with Historic England back then.

“Residents do get fed up with unused buildings like this and worry about what is going to happen next while they remain closed down.

“I am grateful to residents who report concerns to the council or to the police.”

 She added: “Last year cars were being dumped there and I worked to do the necessary checks so that any abandoned vehicles could be removed as per policy.

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“The building will be looked at again by the council and other partners as we have statements that people are getting in the building again and might be up to no good.

“Public safety is the standout matter with an unused building, and I will keep up the oversight to help towards preventing harm occurring.

“Where the council has the powers to work with building owners this work will be carried out.”   

Police officers have said that they also plan to give the building some attention and will try to find out what the plan for the future of the abandoned pub may be.