Hotel plan submitted for Manchester fire station

Image caption,
The former fire station was built between 1904 and 1906

Plans to transform a historic former fire station in Manchester city centre into a four star hotel have been submitted to the council.

The Grade II listed building on London Road has been at the centre of a row between Hale-based Britannia Hotels and Manchester City Council.

Councillors believe it has been empty for too long and want the company to sell up.

The council said it would continue to press for a compulsory purchase order.

Britannia confirmed on Tuesday that it had lodged plans to create a 227-bed hotel, bar, restaurant and function space within the building.

It had previously said it was committed to redeveloping the site, which sits at the junction of London Road and Fairfield Street opposite Piccadilly Station.

A decision on the planning application is expected by the end of August, but in the meantime the council will push ahead with attempts to buy the site.

A spokesman said: "The City Council's position on this landmark site was made clear in the detailed report which went to our executive in December, stating that we want to secure the full and proper redevelopment of this site.

Image caption,
The fire station was previously used as the company's head office

"Despite the recent submission of a planning application, our objectives for this site remain the same."

The imposing building was constructed between 1904 and 1906 and served as the headquarters for Manchester's Fire Brigade in the first half of the 20th Century.

The building was listed in October 1974 while still a functioning fire station, but closed in the mid 1980s and was placed on English Heritage's At Risk Register in 2001.

Its listing describes the building as an "ebullient Edwardian Baroque style".

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