Former Garston police station earmarked to become flats

A historic former south Liverpool police station disposed of by the force could be repurposed into new housing.

Almost three years ago, as part of its wider estates strategy Merseyside Police closed down Heald Street station in Garston. Now a planning application has been lodged with Liverpool Council that could give the building that dates back to 1890 a fresh lease of life.

Riscon Holdings is seeking to transform the site into nine apartments subject to committee sign off.

Documents released by the city council’s planning department indicated that the two-storey detached building was built in the 19th century as a purpose-built police station and served as such until it closed in 2021. It has lain dormant ever since.

Riscon’s proposals seek to change the building across both floors with eight one-bed apartments and a further two-bed arrangement. A commercial office would also be installed at ground floor level.

Given the history of the building, a series of minor external alterations are proposed to bring it up to a “habitable, modern standard.” This would include the replacement of windows, refurbished entrance doors and the installation of rooflights.

The applicant said, “The proposed development will support local shops, services and infrastructure as well as making an important contribution to the council’s housing and office floorspace on what is an existing building within the urban area.” 

More than £20m is expected to be recouped from the sale of 11 old and unused police stations across Merseyside in the next decade as part of a wide-ranging estates strategy. Police and crime commissioner Emily Spurell said this was vital cash that could help reinforce frontline services.

It was confirmed in October 2022 that the Garston site would be sold. Mrs Spurrell said at the time assessments were being made for the viability of a community station being set up given officers previously using space in the community’s hospital to see members of the public.

A date for a decision the housing plan for the former station by the local authority has yet to be determined.

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