Plans to redevelop ‘unsightly’ Crosby town centre shops revealed

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An “unsightly” row of shops could be replaced with a five-storey block of flats in plans to regenerate the centre of Crosby.

Proposals submitted by developers Crossfield Exclusive would see Telegraph House in Moor Lane demolished and replaced with a £10m building containing three or four shops on the ground floor and 74 flats on the upper floors.

Crossfield, which bought Telegraph House last year for £1m, said in its application that its plans would enhance the “viability and vitality of Crosby centre”.

The company added: “Introducing a resident population into Crosby centre will help to rejuvenate local businesses, improve both the day and night-time economy and reduce the fear and occurrence of criminal activity in the surrounding area.”

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Described by Crossfield as “tired and dated” and by members of the public as “unsightly” and “an eyesore”, Telegraph House has been slated for redevelopment for the last 15 years and is now mostly vacant.

However, previous attempts to regenerate the site have failed, leaving a building that Crossfield said “does not contribute positively to the centre in any way”.

As well as replacing the existing Telegraph House, the new building will cover the neighbouring plot left vacant after the demolition of a row of houses opposite the Allengate car park.

The developers expect their plan to help boost the centre of Crosby by moving residents closer to existing shops and providing refreshed commercial space that could support up to 50 jobs at a time when high street employment has fallen thanks to the pandemic.

Crossfield has also said its proposals help meet the challenge of the climate emergency by redeveloping a brownfield site and reducing emissions from transport by building homes within easy reach of jobs, services and shops.

So far, three members of the public have commented on the plans, all expressing support for the proposed redevelopment.

One, Angela Cain, said: “I have lived in Crosby all my life and have never known the village to look so unsightly.

“This development is just what the area needs. It will bring employment, much needed homes and the size is ideal for the location.

“The approach to the village at the moment is not very pleasant so a fabulous new building like this, which is a great design would make it more interesting.”

The plans are open for public comment until May 21 and Sefton Council aims to make a decision on the application by July 19.