Demolition of Scarborough town centre building is set to be refused

Albemarle Chambers. Photo; Google
Albemarle Chambers. Photo; Google

A building in the heart of Scarborough’s town centre is set to be saved from demolition despite claims that it is structurally unsound.

Cavendish And Gloucester PLC had applied to Scarborough Council to tear down and replace the four-storey Albemarle Chambers building in Westborough, stating there were “concerning structural issues” with the building.

The company cited sloping floors and cracks to the interior as proof but planning officers for the borough authority are unconvinced.

The borough council’s planning manager David Walker has recommended that the authority’s planning committee should refuse the plans when they meet next week.

He wrote: “The council] considers that the application building positively contributes to the character of the Scarborough Conservation Area and makes a bold statement on a prominent corner of the town centre and that harm would arise to the conservation area from its demolition.

“No clear and convincing justification has been put forward for the demolition of the building and no public benefits have been cited in support of the proposal that could be weighed against the harm that would arise,”

Scarborough Civic Society and the Victorian Society both objected to the plans and Scarborough Council’s own structural engineer said that while the building had structural defects the reports submitted did not justify the demolition.

Historic England also raised an objection and North Yorkshire Police felt not enough detail had been given on what would replace the three retail units on the ground floor.