UGLY eyesores are set to be demolished to kickstart a major redevelopment project.
The Deighton and Brackenhall Initiative Ltd (DBI) has bought up a string of buildings along the run-down Sheepridge Road, including the old Co-op, the bookmakers and five houses, with a view to knocking them down.
If planning approval is granted a car parking area will be created in the short-term, to relieve congestion.
It is hoped however, that the site could become a location for the stalled GP surgery for Ashbrow, currently the subject of a council scrutiny panel.
Plans for a new GP centre were shelved during the financial downturn prompting angry accusations of neglect from local councillors.
Existing shops will also undergo external cleaning of stone walls as part of the rejuvenation.
Members of the DBI aim to reinvigorate Sheepridge and increase its appeal to investors and businesses.
Chair of the DBI, Clr Jean Calvert, said: “There are some shops further down and we will put in new windows and shutters so that the whole area will look better.
“Eventually it could be a great site for a health centre.
“We are delighted at the progress being made in the effort to rejuvenate Sheepridge village centre and these latest developments will really improve its appearance and hopefully attract more people back to the shops and businesses.”
The DBI investigated the possibility of purchasing more properties but the landlord who rents out the mini-market next to the former bookmakers declined to sell.
Clr Calvert added: “The new car park will make the centre much easier to access and reduce the amount of vehicles currently parking on the side of the road adjacent to the main shops.
“This is another significant part of the regeneration of the whole area.”
The DBI was established in 1997 to tackle issues of deprivation which were blighting the area.
Work on longer term plans for Sheepridge are ongoing
The prospect of a health centre will be welcomed by residents who have long complained that they have no dedicated GP within an easy journey.
In an appearance before the Ashbrow Scrutiny Panel the chief executive of NHS Kirklees, Mike Potts, said the fact there was no dedicated new-build did not mean there was an under-representation of health practitioners in the area.