Town welcomes plans for a new-look weind

Plans which will give a boost to Garstang’s commercial heartland and brighten up one of the town’s busiest but most lack-lustre weinds, have been unveiled.

Preston-based Lanceshire Limited plans to convert the outbuildings on Singleton’s/Stoops Weind into two business premises – one of which could be a fish and chip eatery and takeaway.

Lanceshire Ltd revealed this week that the project was an integral part of its purchase and on-going improvements of Stoops Hall, the ground floor of which Lanceshire rents to Dawsons of Blackpool who run Singleton’s.

Spokesman Robert Pinkus said the 
overall investment – the purchase of the premises, the improvements and now the shops plan – 
represented a £750,000 investment in Garstang.

Improvement work which will see the creation of two large flats on the upper floors of Stoops Hall has been underway for several weeks and is due to be completed early next month.

Work on the fish 
restaurant and second business unit along Stoops Weind will begin as soon as planning approval is given.

Mr Pinkus said work would take about six to eight weeks, meaning that, if planning permission is given before the end of the year, the two new businesses could be up and running by early 2013, giving Garstang centre a new year boost.

The commercial 
development on Stoops Weind would create 12 new jobs, four full-time and eight part-time.

The proposed fish 
restaurant and takeway would be at the western most part of the site, opposite M&Co and backing on to Park Hill Road. Lanceshire’s agents say they have already have a “reputable tenant” lined up for the fish eatery/takeaway.

In a statement to Wyre Council the agents say: “The existing rear outbuildings are structurally sound, but look unattractive with their combination of brick walls and metal cladding walls, combined with a corrugated asbestos cement roof.”

A heritage report submitted with the plans says: “The improvements to the façade of the existing buildings will provide interest to Stoops Weind and an active façade, and therefore will mark a positive improvement to the conservation area.”

Garstang Chamber of Trade spokesman Mr Damian Carr said: “I think any commercial development of the weind is good news.

“It should benefit the town, as well as improving visual impact of that area.”

The wiend has been given a series of mini-makeovers in recent years, the last when M&Co moved into the former Booths store about two years ago.

But the frontage of the outbuildings at the rear of Singleton’s have regularly been criticised as giving a poor image at an entry point to Garstang.

The agent for the plans are Damson Design Ltd of Kendal.

Wyre Council is hoping to make a decision on the plans by December 14. Consultations on the plans began last week.