Homeless hostel and affordable homes on way

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

More than 130 affordable homes and a homeless hostel look set to be built in the Lancaster district.

The Adactus and Guinness Norther Counties housing associations are working with Lancaster City Council on a raft of schemes to help slash social housing waiting lists and provide desperately needed new homes.

The developments, subject to planning consent, include:

* A homeless hostel at the former Dolly Blue Tavern social club at Lancaster City Football Club (Adactus).

* 16 one-bed flats on land at Long Marsh Lane previously used as overspill car parking by the football club (Adactus).

* 53 ‘assisted living’ units for people with disabilities at the former Riverview care home and day centre off Bulk Road, Lancaster (Adactus).

* 24 one-bed flats at the Luneside East development site on St George’s Quay, (Guinness).

* 19 units at the former Williamson’s site at Lune Mills on St George’s Quay (Adactus).

* 12 one-bed flats at Brindle Close. Scale Hall (Guinness).

n8 two and three bed homes in Hornby (Adactus).

The Dolly Blue Tavern was leased by the football club from owner Prospect Estates until it closed last summer.

Prospect earlier this year secured planning permission for 22 student flats on the site.

The club had opposed those plans, claiming there was a council covenant on the building restricting its use to that of a social club, but a council report said the covenant was a separate legal issue that it would need to discuss with the owners.

It is believed that Prestige is now near to selling the site to Adactus for use as a homeless hostel. Mick Hoyle, the Lancaster City Football Club owner, declined to comment.

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.

Christ Church, on East Road, Lancaster, has provided a night shelter during the winter months since 1992 and the Lancaster District Homeless Action Service on Edward Street, provides a range of support services for the homeless.

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”.

She added that the affordable housing schemes were “fantastic news”.

“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 planned housing is due to be funded with money supplied by the Homes and Communities Agency.