Sale Magistrates Court

Sale magistrates’ court set for demolition

Charlie Schouten

After buying the building on Washway Road this summer, Trafford Council will start demolition of Sale’s magistrates’ court next week to clear the site for a potential residential development.

Contractor PP O’Connor will start work to knock down the building next Monday and is set to have the site cleared by the New Year, allowing Trafford Council to push on with residential-led redevelopment on the plot, which also borders Ashton Lane. A row of mature trees along Washway Road will be maintained throughout the demolition.

In July this year, the council snapped up the site from Homes England for an undisclosed fee. The building was transferred to Homes England, formerly the Homes & Communities Agency, at a value of £3.25m in October 2016.

The council is still looking at development options for the site, and no definite proposals have been decided to date.

The court has been vacant since 2016 after it was one of the sites closed as part of a Government initiative to cut back on costs. It was shut after it was found to cost nearly £600,000 a year to run, but was only in use 27% of the time.

Homes England had previously looked to demolish the building, going as far as to issue a demolition notice in September last year, but this was never progressed.

Cllr James Wright, executive member for investment, regeneration and strategic planning, said: “We were delighted to have been able to secure this site in the summer, which is a mark of our determination to continue regenerating the borough’s town centres. There is now a fantastic opportunity to create a development that will increase footfall and spend in the town centre in a very desirable location.”

“The magistrates’ court has been empty for two years and the demolition will prevent it becoming an eyesore for the area.”

It is the latest development to come forward in Sale town centre after developer Maloneview submitted a planning application to build 202 homes, 30,000 sq ft of retail and leisure, and a six-screen cinema. This proposed project will replace a large portion of the existing shopping centre, The Square.

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