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Abbey gets go-ahead for vital repairs

29th August 2013 @ 6:06am – by Audlem Reporter
Back home  /  News  /  Abbey gets go-ahead for repairs

Owners of Combermere Abbey have been given the go-ahead to convert the crumbling North Wing to a new residence.

The semi -derelict North Wing has been disused for years and is propped up with scaffolding and covered with sheeting.

The proposed works are for its conversion to form a dwelling which will include the repair, alteration and refurbishment on the ground and first floor and as well as rebuilding and simplifying the roof structure and attics.

A report to Cheshire East Council said: "The North Wing is an integral part of the architectural and historical significance of Combermere Abbey, which fully merits its Grade I listed status."

The local authority was warned that the North Wing is in "exceptionally poor condition" and that without the repair work the building was at serious risk of collapse.

The building is in such a poor state it is listed on the English Heritage register of Buildings at Risk, as a building in the priority category being "in immediate risk of further rapid deterioration".

Permissions and consents for repair and re-use of the North Wing have been granted in 2002, 2007 and 2008, but the prohibitive costs of restoration have held up work.

Cheshire East was told that finance has now been secured and that repairs and alteration work can now proceed, thus saving the North Wing and allowing the Abbey to be removed from the Heritage at Risk Register.

In recommending approval for the scheme a Cheshire East planning officer said: "It is considered that the re-use of the North Wing as a separate dwelling is acceptable in principle and will allow a derelict historic building to be brought back into economic use."

Builders will have to take extra care not to disturb colonies of bats that have made their home in the rotting rafters.

They may have to set aside an area in the building for the bats to roost and to ensure that no bats are damaged or harmed during the renovation work.

This article is from our news archive. As a result pictures or videos originally associated with it may have been removed and some of the content may no longer be accurate or relevant.

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