Luxury homes plan for listed former school building in Manningham

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A LONG empty Grade II listed former school could finally be brought back into use if new plans are approved.

The former Belle Vue School on Manningham Lane is one of the most impressive buildings on the street – one of the main routes into and out of Bradford city centre.

But the building, most recently used as Coral College for Girls and a short distance from Valley Parade, has been empty for over a decade.

Now a planning application has been submitted to Bradford Council that would see the 4,132 square metre building converted into 22 townhouses, seven apartments and a gym for residents – including a sauna.

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The application says the development will also offer a service where residents can use a phone app to hire electric bicycles and scooters, which can be picked up from the building’s concierge.

Little Germany based Sekhon Group have submitted the application, and say the new housing created through the scheme will be “large” and suitable for families.
They say the dated layout of the building makes it difficult to adapt to modern school standards. Instead they will convert the building to provide a “quality, spacious and high standard of city living.”
The building was constructed in 1885 by the Bradford School Board as a higher boys school. Coral College shut in 2011, and the building has never found a permanent new use.

The application says: “The change of use from educational use to residential use is inevitable as there are no other use classes suitable for the old Belle Vue School. If nothing is done, this fine building will fall further into a state of disrepair.

“The refurbishment will promote regeneration and local employment. The continued dim economic climate locally is becoming more and more challenging.

“The uncertainty of Brexit, now coupled with Covid 19, will effect the pace of any redevelopment.

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“Therefore it is laudable for Sekhon Group to make this commitment. Instead of cramping many small units, our clients have decided to break the mould and create luxury townhouses instead.”

The application includes parking space for 48 cars.
The plans say the building will be known as Belle Vue Residence, and add: “Bradford needs to reinvent itself to attract both local and professional residents from afar rather than lose them to nearby cities such as Leeds, Huddersfield or Manchester.

“Instead of the norm apartment conversions, we have opted for vertical townhouses city living ethos.”

A decision on the application is expected in December.

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