BURY North MP James Daly is backing the campaign to save the Ramsbottom Co-op Music Hall after it was placed on the ‘Theatres at Risk Register’.

The building, nearly 150 years old, was added to the 2021 list by The Theatre Trust, who highlight structures that have significant merit and strong community value, but which are under threat of demolition or permanent closure.

Every building on the list is believed to have a viable future, either as an events space or for community projects.

Built in 1876, the Co-op Music Hall had space for 800 people and was a theatrical and social mecca. It was used as an army training centre during the Second World War but closed its doors in 1944. It retains many original features including paintwork.

Plans by Landa Corporation Ltd to convert the upper levels into apartments were later withdrawn.

The trust wants the building to be listed and restored as a music venue.

Mr Daly said: “This is an absolutely beautiful building that has been lost to the public for too long. We must do everything that we can to preserve this and make it into the community asset that is has the potential to be.”

The MP confirmed he had met the Theatres Trust which has applied to Historic England to list it as a ‘preserved building’ which would prevent any development of the site and protect its heritage.

The trust has also convinced Bury Council to impose a building preservation order. But with this soon to expire, Mr Daly is also meeting with Historic England to secure a listing, and the owners, over a potential sale. He will also be contacting organisations which may be able to provide funding required for the purchase and restoration.

Mr Daly, co-chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Northern Culture, added: “Here we have an opportunity to bring life back to a stunning cultural and historic building. I hope that the whole community will be able to come together to achieve a massive win for culture in Bury, Ramsbottom and Tottington.”