Developer Oakgate Group lodged plans to demolish the former Tramways Club in Mill Street, which closed in 2018. They plan to build a block of 35 apartments on the former working men’s club and make improvements to the small park next door – where there is a gravestone commemorating Dick Turpin.
Heritage reports say the gravestone is unlikely to mark the spot where the notorious highwayman was actually buried – it was installed in 1918 and Dick Turpin was executed at Tyburn in Knavesmire in 1739.
But the report says “the Grade II-listed memorial stone was put in place in 1918 to commemorate a person of historical significance and boost the tourist trade”.
The site of the Tramways Club was previously a row of terraced homes, before the club was built in the early 1960s.
St George’s Catholic Church opposite the site was designed by York-born Charles and Joseph Hansom, designers of the London Hansom cab, according to heritage experts.
The report says: “It opened on 4 September 1850 as the first church to be used as a cathedral after the restoration of Catholicism in York, principally for Irish immigrants who had arrived in the 1840s. It was designed by Charles and Joseph Hansom (at a cost of £3,550).
“St George’s Church is typical of the gothic revival style often used by the architects. The church was the cathedral church for Yorkshire until 1864 when it was replaced by St Wilfrid’s opposite the Minster.”
The new apartment block would have a range of one, two and three bedroom flats. There would be no parking and at least 37 cycle parking spaces.
Richard France, director of Oakgate Group, said: “During the consultation process we received many positive comments about enhancing this seemingly forgotten green space, as well as supportive feedback about the design of the new building.”
“This part of the city centre, the Castle Gateway is undergoing a lot of improvements and our planning proposals will provide further enhancements.”
The park will get new seating, an upgraded path and accessible entrance as part of the development.
A consultation was launched before plans were submitted. The developer says restrictions would be placed on the apartments to make sure they are not used for AirBnB or holiday lets.