Hotel plans for Manchester's London Road Fire Station approved

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London Road Fire StationImage source, Gerald England / Geograph
Image caption,
London Road Fire Station was built between 1904 and 1906

Plans to turn a former fire station into a boutique hotel have been approved by Manchester City Council.

London Road fire station, opposite Piccadilly railway station, will be refurbished and expanded to include a hotel and spa, restaurants, bars, flats and offices.

The Grade II-listed building was bought by developer Allied London in 2015.

Built between 1904 and 1906, the fire station was the brigade's headquarters until its closure in the mid-1980s.

It was bought by Cheshire-headquartered Britannia Hotels in 1985, which ran an office there until about 2001, when it was placed on English Heritage's At Risk register.

It has lain empty for many years.

Image source, Allied London
Image caption,
Plans include a new glass prism in a central courtyard

Manchester City Council had previously attempted to buy the building, but its Compulsory Purchase Order plans were rejected in 2011.

Allied London, which submitted redevelopment plans earlier this year, aims to start work on the project within months following approval by the council's planning and highways committee.

In a report ahead of the meeting, planning officers said the scheme would have "highly significant regeneration benefits" and would secure the long-term future of the building.

Granting approval, committee chairman councillor David Ellison said the project represented "welcome regeneration".

The refurbished building is scheduled to open in summer 2019.