Mayor launches new homes at historic site
21 February 2017
The Mayor of Rochdale, Councillor Ray Dutton, welcomed the transformation of a brownfield site into modern homes at the formal launch of Birch Hill Apartments.
Cutting the ribbon to open the show apartment at the scheme on Oakhurst Drive, Councillor Dutton praised developers Persimmon Lancashire for the sympathetic regeneration of the former Birch Hill Hospital into 44 contemporary homes.
As he toured the development, hearing about the work to protect historic features like the clock tower and the original staircase inside the building, Councillor Dutton said: “I’m so pleased Persimmon kept this building. It looks magnificent.
“Thousands of homes are needed for people in this area, and we have to make sure they are built. It is important that we use brownfield sites like this one. New build in an old building – it’s what the future is all about.Persimmon have done a great job and everyone should be rightly proud.”
Persimmon Lancashire director in charge Chris Kershaw added: “A project like this enables us to preserve the heritage of the area, while at the same time creating much-needed modern new homes for local people.”
The Mayor was shown around the site by project manager Andy Clarke, who explained how the Persimmon team had designed the apartments to showcase the building’s unique architectural features, such as high ceilings and gothic arched windows.
Councillor Dutton’s visit brings the life of the building full circle as the iconic landmark was originally opened as a workhouse by a previous Mayor of Rochdale in 1877.