PLANS have been accepted to turn the former Ramsbottom Police Station in Bridge Street into shops and apartments.

The site was sold at auction to Cllr Rob Hodkinson and his wife Mary Ann in February last year, who then submitted an application to build two shops and eight apartments.

Cllr Hodkinson said: “I want to remove the eyesore that is the police station and replace it with a building that is keeping with the character of the rest of the buildings in the street.

“Compared to the other Victorian buildings it is a bit of a monstrosity.”

The building was sold at the auction for £226,000 after it closed in 2015 by Greater Manchester Police chiefs looking to save money.

Ramsbottom and Radcliffe were both chosen to be closed and put on the market giving the force £700,000 and an annual saving of £100,000.

Although it only officially closed its doors last year Cllr Hodkinson said that it had not been open to the public since 2010.

“I’m hoping that shops and residential space will be more beneficial to the community than an unused police station.”

Planners remarked that the application was a “great design and that more retail would be good for Ramsbottom”.

The full application and conditions can be viewed on Bury Council’s planning website under reference 60708