Residents delighted at official opening of restored former landmark
Published by lpriest for Progress Housing Group in Housing and also in Communities
L-R Toasting the official opening of St George Place in Kirkham, Progress Housing Group’s Chief Executive Jacqui De-Rose, the Mayor of Kirkham Councillor Liz Oades, Mayor of Fylde Councillor Linda Nulty, Fylde MP Mark Menzies and Chair of Progress Housi
An iconic landmark in Kirkham, Lancashire has been restored to its former glory thanks to Progress Housing Group.
The iconic St George Hotel, which stood at the junction of Poulton Street, Moor Street and Station Road in Kirkham, Lancashire, has recently been redeveloped into high quality affordable housing, after the iconic pub fell into disrepair and was left empty for a number of years.
The new development of nine one-bedroom flats and three two-bedroom flats for local people at affordable rent was developed by Progress Housing Group who recently completed an affordable housing scheme across the road on Orders Lane in Kirkham. The new development has been named St George Place after the old pub and has been designed to keep the former pub’s unique J shape, which was a local landmark.
The official opening of the new development was led by the Mayor of Fylde Councillor Linda Nulty, the Mayor of Kirkham Councillor Liz Oades, and Fylde MP, Mark Menzies who cut the opening ribbon and raised a glass to celebrate the opening of the former pub site and to toast the new residents of St George Place.
Fylde MP Mark Menzies said: “It was great to have the opportunity to look around the new development and I was impressed by the high standard to which it has been completed.
“This is a landmark site on a key junction in Kirkham and it was important that the building continued to reflect that.
“Having spoken to a number of residents who have already moved into the new apartments I know they are very happy with what has been built. I hope they continue to enjoy their new homes for many years to come.”
For generations, the iconic St George’s Hotel, known affectionately by local residents as The George, was once a popular venue, particularly with American soldiers and later the RAF who attended weekly dances at the pub during the wartime years.
Unfortunately the pub was closed in December 2010 due to the economic decline, and soon fell into disrepair and consequently attracted anti-social behaviour and organised crime.
Progress Housing Group and Melrose Construction purchased the old pub in December 2012.
Progress Housing Group originally aimed to preserve the external façade of the old pub however due to water ingress, rot and infestation a surveyors report concluded that in its current state of disrepair it was not financially sound to salvage the building. There was keen local interest prior to works commencing in March 2013 to preserve the former pub until a member of Progress Housing Groups development team invited Local Councillor, Liz Oades to view the site and showed her the extent of the internal damage. From then on, Councillor Oades fully backed the redevelopment of the site.
Progress Housing Group worked very closely with the architects and local planners to ensure the final plans for the new scheme were appropriate for the location. All felt it important to retain the design and shape of the original building as much as possible.
Local residents have expressed their delight about the new development, with many commenting on how the new apartments have kept the same shape as the old pub, and are still very in keeping with Kirkham town centre.
Mrs Jennings, who grew up living on Moor Street in Kirkham and still lives in Kirkham today said: ‘I grew up going around The George as my school friend’s family use to own it; it was always so busy, and I have very fond memories of the place. But I am now so pleased that it has been redeveloped and made into something attractive again, the fact that the apartment block still has the same style and shape as The George is great, and it is still a lovely looking building for people to look at as they enter our town.’