Plans for homes on historic Wedgwood pottery site.
FORMER Doulton and Wedgwood factory showrooms could be replaced by housing or a care home.
The five-acre site off King Street, in Fenton, is now being marketed as suitable for redevelopment.
It means the two neighbouring buildings, which make up the old precision studios and factory shop, could be knocked down.
The site was initially advertised as being available for sale or to let, with the buildings intact, but there was little interest.
Now receivers are keen to get the site off the books and have instructed property consultancy Harris Lamb to market the site as a redevelopment opportunity.
Marc Wilson, from Harris Lamb, said: “The buildings have sat empty since the companies went into administration in January 2009.
“Harris Lamb have been marketing the buildings on a to let or for sale basis, in the hope of securing a tenant or buyer who would bring new life to the buildings as they stand.
“However, due to limited interest we are now talking to developers seeking to redevelop the site for an alternative use.
“A residential planning permission was granted on the neighbouring Foley Pottery sparking interest from housing developers in the former showrooms.”
The plans for old Foley Pottery, in King Street, were approved in November 2002 and in 2006 consent was given for the detailed application for 51 flats. Although progressing at a slow pace, work on the site has started. There is no time limit on the work being completed.
The potential use of the Doulton and Wedgwood site for residential use is mentioned in the Longton Masterplan.
Residents are currently being consulted on the document, which sets out how the town, and King Street, could be developed.
Harris Lamb has already held informal talks with Stoke-on-Trent City Council about the possibility of the site being used for a residential purpose.
And in the marketing pack, prepared for potential bidders, developers are advised to speak with the council about their specific plans to check if the area would be suitable for their proposals.
The site is bordered by Sidings Place and stretches to the railway tracks.
Mr Wilson added: “We are currently inviting developers to make a proposal and hope to conclude matters within the next four to six weeks. We expect to received a subject-to-planning offer.”
The council has already advised Harris Lamb that a retail development would be unlikely to be supported because it would impact on Longton and other town centres.
But a residential scheme is a possibility as it would support the town. The council would ask for the development to meet local housing needs.
A residential care facility could also be considered, either on its own, or as part of mixed-use development.
But the council will be keen to ensure the development strengthens links between King Street and Longton town centre and improves the appearance of the street.
From The Sentinel 10/02/2011
What would you like to see built on the site? For comments or further information, please call Marc Wilson on 0121 455 9455 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.