Dolly Blue pub is to become a homeless hostel

Dolly Blue Tavern, Giant Axe, Lancaster City.
Dolly Blue Tavern, Giant Axe, Lancaster City.

A homeless hostel is to be built on the site of the former Dolly Blue Tavern social club at Lancaster City FC after city councillors gave the plans the thumbs up.

The hostel will be built on the site of the former Dolly Blue Tavern at Giant Axe by housing association Adactus.

Adactus also hope to build 16 one-bed flats on land at Long Marsh Lane which was previously used as overspill car parking by the football club.

As part of the application, the Dolly Blue Tavern and associated steward’s house will be demolished, with a two-storey building built in its place to be occupied and managed as supported living accommodation for single homeless people aged 25 and over.

The development will primarily comprise six emergency bedrooms and communal facilities, 12 move-on units (split into three groups of four), five self-contained apartments, communal facilities and staff accommodation, a secure cycle and outdoor area, a detached external refuse store and six parking spaces.

Coun Karen Leytham, cabinet member for housing, said the Dolly Blue Tavern site would provide “much-needed homeless accommodation with assistance provided to residents to help them move into a settled lifestyle.”

“Local residents have been desperate for more affordable homes to be built in the district to enable young couples and families to start to build their lives,” said Coun Leytham, who represents Skerton West.

An Adactus spokesman said it and the council had secured funding for the hostel scheme and were working together on the plans. The housing is due to be funded with money supplied by the Homes and Communities Agency.

The Dolly Blue Tavern was originally built as a sports and social club in association with the football club.

However, about seven years ago the building was sold off by the club chairman and was subsequently leased back to the club until earlier this year when they vacated the premises.

The property was then leased by the football club from owner Prospect Estates until it closed last summer, but has since been taken over by Adactus.

The new development is one of several schemes which Adactus is working on with Lancaster City Council to help slash social housing waiting lists and provide desperately needed new homes.

There is currently no hostel accommodation in the city for over 25s, although the YMCA offers housing for young people in Fleet Square and Adactus has 11 apartments for young homeless people at Mariners View.