Eyesore shop in Fleetwood cordoned off again as residents demand action
The area around an eyesore shop in Fleetwood has had to be cordoned off a second time in just a few weeks due to safety concerns.
And the latest incident at the former Store Twenty One premises, on Lord Street, has led residents to demand that something be done to tidy the building up and make it safer.
But local authority Wyre Council says its powers are limited except under extreme circumstances, when the owner could be hit with a court order if they failed to act.
The council knows who the owner is but their identity has not been divulged.
In the latest incident, a third storey window somehow opened and was blowing about so much residents feared it could be ripped off its hinges and smash onto the pavement below.
Wyre was contacted and workmen put a low cordon on the pavement around the shop today.
Only last month, some of the first floor windows blew out in strong winds and left shattered glass scattered across the pavement on Lord Street - Fleetwood's main shopping street.
Fortunately, that incident occurred on a Sunday night when there were no pedestrians walking past.
The area around the shop had to be cordoned off on that occasion too.
Fleetwood resident Christine Whittaker, 73, of Adelaide Street, Fleetwood, said: "I saw the window moving about in the wind and a curtain
"It didn't look safe.The whole building is an absolute disgrace."
And former Fleetwood councillor, Angela Patchett said: "People are wondering if someone has to be injured or even killed before something is done.
"This is right in the centre of town, it should not be allowed. It brings Fleetwood down."
A Wyre Council spokesman said: "It is the building owner’s responsibility to keep a building safe.
"If we are notified that a building is unsafe we would visit the property.
"If it represented an immediate threat to the public we would remove the danger, and would then report this to the owner.
"If there is an issue that is not imminently dangerous we would notify the owner and give them a reasonable time to remove the problem.
"Failure to respond may result in a magistrate court order being obtained."
The shop premises is the largest in Fleetwood and in the 1980s was home to a Marks and Spencer branch, which was Fleetwood's most prestigious shop.
But now there is now only anger and frustration in the town over the shocking state of the building.