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YMCA Building In Bolton To Be Demolished

Wednesday, February 26th, 2020 8:03am

By Joseph Timan, Local Democracy Reporter

Affordable flats will be built, with room for the charity to use on the ground floor.

An historic town centre building is set to be knocked down to make way for affordable flats aimed at young working people.

The latest plans to demolish YMCA building in Deansgate, which was built in the early 20th century, have been given the green light this week.

A new five-storey building is planned with 40 one-bedroom apartments and space for the youth charity to use on the ground floor.

But the organisation with links to the town dating back 136 years must first raise £6m for the project.

Bolton YMCA chief executive John Cronin welcomed the news that the latest planning proposal had passed.

He said: “Obviously, we are pleased. It means the YMCA will still have a presence in Bolton which it has done since 1884. We now need to start fundraising as much as we can to reduce the loan.”

Mr Cronin said the charity will raise funds in a variety of ways, such as bidding for grants and holding fundraising events, and borrow money to finance the remaining fees.

He hopes that demolition of the existing building will get underway by the end of the year with a target of completing the 60-week construction project by the end of 2021.

This is the second proposal in two years which has received planning permission at the town centre site.

Plans for a new building with 23 flats, more space for activities and retail units on the ground floor were approved by the planning committee in February 2019.

According to Mr Cronin, the accommodation in the latest proposal will be targeted at young working people from the area.

When asked whether the new building would be used as student accommodation, he said: “If they happen to be students, that’s fine. But it’s for local young people. Youngsters in work.”

The design of the latest development has been altered since the plans were first submitted last November.

Town hall planners approved the application on Monday after it was agreed that red brick would be used alongside light coloured brick, stone surrounds and glazed curtain walling.

Mr Cronin said the charity is satisfied with the officers’ changes.

Anyone wishing to donate or help the YMCA raise funds for the project can call the Bolton office on 01204 522855.

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