A former fire station is set for a new lease of life as the focus for a residential scheme for the over 50s.
The 108-year-old building at Manchester Road, Marsden, has been bought from West Yorkshire Fire Service by developer SB Homes, based in Marsden. The fire station was on the market at an asking price of £250,000.
The stone-built single-storey property has been empty since 2005 when part-time firefighters moved to an adjacent building, now called Emergency House.
SB Homes is also set to buy adjoining brownfield land at the rear of the old fire station from Northern Gas Networks. The move will result in a 20,000sq ft site which the company plans to turn into a residential rental development, primarily for people aged over 50.
Commenting on the disused fire station site, SB Homes managing director Stephen Byram said: “This piece of land has been on the market for a number of years now and currently retains planning consent for use as a cafe and yoga studio.
“We’ve acquired it because of its prime position, just a two-minute walk from the village of Marsden. It’s perfect for over 50s who wish to retire and/or downsize.
“The build-to-rent sector is typically aimed at younger generations who find it difficult to get on the property ladder, but we find that in a village setting this generally works equally well for older generations. Many over 50s want to release equity from their houses to enjoy their retirement.”
SB Homes is submitting plans to Kirklees Council following a “positive” pre-application consultation.
Steve Mitchell, SB Homes’ designer, said: “We are hopeful that this will be passed with planning consent
“We’ve put a lot of thought into how it will work. We want to keep the original frontage and create communal garden spaces.
“A living wall planter has even been designed to make it a green building — not only for attractiveness but also to act as an additional insulator. We really want to create a sense of community for the tenants who will eventually live there.”
The family-run housebuilding firm is currently developing Empire Works, a scheme of 60 homes alongside the narrow canal in Slaithwaite.
Past developments in Marsden include Ancion Court, a housing scheme for over 55s; Deer Hill, a development of 60 houses; and The Coach House, a conversion of a former pub to create five homes.