Plans to convert Eccles Crown Theatre into apartments have been passed following a Salford planning committee meeting last week.

Property developers Foregate Limited have been given permission to convert the theatre into 82 apartments over eight stories, although a start date for the development is yet to be announced.

Campaigners including the ‘Help Save The Crown Theatre Eccles’ group had been battling to prevent the plans from going through for the last four years.

Jon Grieves, chairman of ‘Help Save The Crown Theatre Eccles’, said: “It has been part of Eccles history for over 100 years, so it’s touched a lot of people over its time.

“We can’t object to what has been passed by the planning panel but what we could do is buy the site, if we had the money.”

He added: “It’s always been important to many families. Lots of people remembered meeting here.”

The Crown Theatre first opened in 1899 as the Lyceum Theatre and served as cinema and a bingo hall before it closed in the 1980s.

George Formby and Stan Laurel were just some of entertainers to perform at the theatre, while Red Rum made an appearance when it was a Bingo hall.

The plans initially had involved demolishing the whole building.

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However, the façade of the Grade-II listed building will remain following pressure from the campaign group.

Mr Grieves said: “I think it’s a win to save a bit of history that’s going to go on for many years. People will see that building and still ask questions about it.”

 

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