Green light to turn church site into homes

Kings Christian Centre, Blackpool
Kings Christian Centre, Blackpool
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An historic church is set to be transformed into housing after plans lodged with Blackpool Council were given the green light.

The Kings Christian Centre, formerly known as the Claremont Congregational Church, on Warley Road, North Shore, is now expected to be levelled under plans lodged by Blackpool-based GO Developments.

The firm wants to flatten the church, which was built in 1900, and replace it with a three-storey building containing 15 two-bedroom flats.

Company founder and site owner Ged O’Mahoney, who bought the site for £250,000, said the 114-year-old building had been listed by Blackpool Council, but due to the extensive rebuilding work has been told by planners the status is no longer required.

Granting planning permission, head of development management at Blackpool Council, Gary Johnston, said no work must be carried out until landscaping details have been sent in.

He added: “Any trees or shrubs which are removed, uprooted, destroyed, die, or become severely damaged or seriously diseased within five years of planting shall be replaced within the next planting season by trees or shrubs of similar size and species to those originally required to be planted.”

Several other conditions have also been imposed, including the need for car parking spaces to be finished before tenants move in.

Councillors representing the area, which falls under the Warbreck ward, said the building was in need of redevelopment.

Coun Tony Brown said: “It is very run down and there was talk of turning it into a soup kitchen but it has come to nought.”