Town eyesore could be set for a facelift

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AN HISTORIC building in the heart of Spilsby could be set for a major facelift if planners give it the green light.

The dilapidated old building, of 1 Market Street, has sat dormant and battled through a series of planning hurdles over the last five years.

Now its owner, Mr Gary Batten, is hoping new listed building plans which are set to go before East Lindsey District Council’s committee, will be passed.

Speaking of the proposals, Mr Batten said: “The application proposes to restore the external facades to their heritage best with a number of old photographs having been used to establish the original design of the shop fronts, windows and front door.

“The inappropriate 1970s rear extensions will be demolished and in its place a more sympathetic two storey extension deigned with the help of officers at ELDC, will be built for residential use.”

The ground floor will reinstated internally as a shop with the two upper floors being used for two further flats.

There will also be a new colour scheme to further enhance the market place.

“If the planning committee see fit to grant the necessary permission then after five painful years for Spilsby, this building work will be able to start this year and bring this prominent building back into use,” added Mr Batten.

As reported, in the Standard’s (March 31, 2010) edition, more than 1,000 shopkeepers and residents previously signed a petition organised by Spilsby Business Partnership, which campaigned for he building to be tidied up.

The petition was then presented to the MP for Louth and Horncastle, Sir Peter Tapsell, where it was hoped he would spread awareness about the issue.

Town councillors were also keen to see the building retain its character and in particular, its chimney stack.

Speaking at the time, Coun Gill Rymer said of the plans, that it was time something was done as they had been waiting since December 2006.

And Coun Julia Pears, chair of the planning committee for Spilsby Town Council, speaking on Monday, said she was supportive of the new plans and said she would make a recommendation to her fellow councillors at a planning meeting scheduled for this week, that they should vote to support it.

She said: “Having looked at the very detailed application submitted, it looks complimentary to the conservation area of the town as we are very concerned in Spilsby to keep this.

“It seems the plans are very much in keeping, with its pantile roofing tiles and brickwork, also the windows.

“I am looking forward to the high standard of build that will be shown once completed.

“I hope it will improve the look of Market Street and be in keeping with the other buildings.”

The final decision will be made on the plans in due course by Easy Lindsey District Council.