Fancy a des res - in a cemetery? Kirklees Council puts Batley Cemetery Lodge up for auction

Asking price of £100,000 for dead quiet location

Historian Malcolm Haigh and the Batley Cemetery Lodge

When it comes to buying a house it’s all about location, location, location.

This grade II listed building would make a superb family home. The only problem is the neighbours.

The Cemetery Lodge is, as the name suggests, in a cemetery!

Kirklees Council is selling the historic building at the entrance to Batley Cemetery which it says is perfect for a residential conversion.

The unusual property, with a guide price of £75,000 to £100,000, will go under the hammer at a land and property auction on May 15.

Batley historian Malcolm Haigh, former co-ordinator for Batley Cemetery Support Group, can see the benefits of having live-in residents to protect against vandalism – but didn’t want to see the building sold off.

“I can see the attraction of the lodge as a home,” he said. “It’s a lovely building and it will be dead quiet at night, or at least we think it will be!

“But for me, Kirklees Council shouldn’t sell it off. This is part and parcel of Batley’s history.”

The building is among the latest batch of council-owned property worth millions of pounds which is going under the hammer.

Critics say the authority is selling the family silver but the council needs to cut costs and balance the books in times of austerity.

Mr Haigh said: “I’m not against the building being rented, but I don’t think it should be sold. As long as Kirklees owns the building it has a say in how it is looked after.

“Once it is sold you would hope it will be developed and cared for but what if it isn’t? Kirklees won’t be able to do anything about it.”

Batley Cemetery has previously been hailed as a national example of restoration.

The Twin Chapels were restored in 2002 as community buildings and meeting rooms.

They have since been closed and are now being lived in by temporary tenants to protect them from thieves and vandals.

Mr Haigh said he hoped the chapels would be brought back into use. There had been some demand for their original use – as chapels for funeral services.

The auction is at the Cedar Court Hotel, Ainley Top.

For more information: ring Walker Singleton on 01484 477600.

 
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