Listed mill in Yorkshire which was left to go derelict and is 'occupied by pigeons' to be turned into flats

A derelict listed building in Bradford’s historic Little Germany area which is currently “occupied by pigeons” could soon be refurbished and converted into flats.

One side of the warehouse, on the junction of Chapel Street and Scoresby Street, will be familiar to many visitors to the city – as it is home to a huge portrait of David Hockney made out of nails. But move around the building and the Victorian factory is in a sorry state – with boarded up windows on the ground floor and smashed windows on upper floors.

Now an application to turn the building into 13 one-bed apartments has been submitted to Bradford Council by Iqbal Singh. The building used to be home to a company that created car accessories and car mats, but has been derelict for well over a decade. Applications to convert the building into flats have been approved in the past – but work never went ahead.

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Little Germany is home to the highest concentration of listed buildings in Europe, and this Grade II-listed warehouse is one of them. It was constructed in the 1880s, but is now a shadow of the building that was awarded the listing in the early 1980s.

44 Chapel Street Little Germany44 Chapel Street Little Germany
44 Chapel Street Little Germany

The planning application says: “Basically within the next 12 months, if nothing positive is done, then these commercial/warehouse spaces are likely to fall into disrepair as the interior has been occupied by pigeons and a lot of pigeon’s droppings have started to accumulate.”

It says the apartments will “bring a hustle and bustle and activities back into the local community and assist with a social role and night life.

“Due to the awkward shape and size, it is increasingly difficult for the mill building to be readapted for other commercial uses. The change of use to residential apartments is the only commercially viable solution to preserve the character and setting of the building.”

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The application suggests that work would start shortly after any approval – seemingly referring to the numerous residential developments in the city that have been approved but never come to fruition.

44 Chapel Street In Little Germany44 Chapel Street In Little Germany
44 Chapel Street In Little Germany

It adds: “This regeneration of existing property in the heart of Bradford city centre will provide first time buyer’s families to move onto the property ladder and eventually create a proper home for themselves or alternatively a rental market and investments for our clients.

“Most importantly our client would ensure that this residential apartment regeneration would be implemented and become a reality rather than obtaining a positive decision and sitting on it.”

A decision on the application is expected next month.