S&U Messenger update 2008

From the Stretford and Urmston Messenger. Here is the article in full. Let us know what you think.

THE future of one of Stretford’s most famous landmarks is safe according to it’s owner.
The Essoldo Theatre on the east side of Chester Road has been at the centre of much speculation since it closed in 1995.

The building was sold to a Sale business man in 1997 and he spoke to SUM to explain his plans. He said: “The building is in safe hands, it will not be demolished. There are plans to create a family orientated leisure centre that will be embraced by the whole community.
“Progress will be made by the end of the year on the visual appearance of the outside of the theatre.”

The news was welcomed by Matthew White founder of http://www.longfordcinema.co.uk, who has been campaigning to get the building back in working order. He said: “This is very good news, it is very encouraging, it would be interesting to know more about the time scale. “But it is still great the owner has said out loud that the building is not at risk, which was really our number one concern. We would like to say if there is anything we can do to help achieve the objective, then we are more than willing to speak to him, in the meantime we will continue to monitor the situation.”

A council spokesperson said: “We would welcome the Essoldo building being brought back into active public use, and would welcome an approach from its owner to discuss future plans.
“The Council considers that the best way of securing the upkeep of listed buildings is to keep them in use, which is in line with advice from the government and English Heritage.”

What are your thoughts on this. Do you think this will happen, is it the best use, would you use the facility? You can let us know by clicking on the comments link below.


2 responses to “S&U Messenger update 2008

  1. I still have some doubts as to whether this will happen. From what I know of planning rules there is usually a 3 year time limit on any plans that are granted. This would mean that the plans spoken of are 2 years out of date and therefore would need to be resubmitted. There is no guarantee that they would be approved again either i guess! All I would ask is that whoever owns it hires some sandblasters pretty urgently to remove the hideous paint job that currently makes this stunning building look like a blot on the landscape!

  2. Thank you for all the updates, even though we are so far away we are so pleased to be kept in the loop of what is going on with the Longford. My Mom, Betty Badham had told us so many stories from her days working their and I really hope the owners carry through and do make the building a viable part of the community again.

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