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Harris Institute owners move to squash ‘for sale’ rumours

Posted on - 20th March, 2024 - 9:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Avenham, History, Politics, Preston City Centre, Preston News, Redevelopment
The Harris Institute today Pic: Preston Digital Archive
The Harris Institute Pic: Preston Digital Archive

A grade-II listed building in Preston city centre was the subject of speculation about its future in the last 24-hours.

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The Harris Institute, in Avenham Lane, is currently standing empty and its owners had been consulting on proposals for a new use for the building.

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However, a campaign group set up to save the Institute were alerted to a new property listing online appearing to show the building was back on the market.

Read more: Public denied chance to consult on Old Tram Bridge replacements

The Harris Investment Group Limited moved to clarify they were proceeding with plans for the building and the property listing was a technical glitch.

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A spokesperson for the group told Blog Preston: “We can confirm that the building is not up for sale. Following our successful public consultation in November last year, we have been working alongside our technical team with the intention of submitting a formal planning application to Preston City Council in the coming weeks.

“We recognise that there is a lot of interest in the future of the site, and we would like to reassure residents that we remain committed to bringing this historic building back to productive use.”

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The consultation – run in conjunction with the Friends of the Harris School of Art – last year showcased visuals from architects Studio John Bridge to include a cafe, exhibition space, co-working and conference space within the building.

One of the artist drawings for the revamped Harris Institute Pic: Studio John Bridge

Standing empty for more than a decade the building needs extensive renovation to be brought back into use and dates back to 1847.

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