Historic Preston building sold

Rachael Tinniswood

A landmark Preston building which stood empty for more than 18 months has been sold to a secret buyer.

The University of Central Lancashire will not reveal the buyer of the listed Harris Institute in Avenham Lane because it says the deal is too commercially sensitive.

The 19th Century building was sold subject to contract with the deal expected to be signed off by the end of July.

For months the future of the building seemed uncertain, due to the fact that it was funded by Edmund Harris on the stipulation that it would be used for educational purposes.

It had stood empty since art students moved to a new £15m centre, and UCLAN had already confirmed that it would not be retained for student use.

So concerned was English Heritage about the future of the building, that the organisation had put the building on its 2009 'at risk' list.

DTZ was the selling agent.

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Who are the University of Central Lancs to have authority over Edmund Harris stipulation. Why are students not using this facility? Who is funding the new facility.

By P. Mc Carten