COUNCIL bosses in Bury are looking to offload several landmark buildings and sites in a bid to plug an £11m funding gap.

The St Mary's Place offices for the children's safeguarding board and the former textile hall, in Manchester Road, which has housed the adult care connect and direct service, are being lined up for disposal.

And for sale signs could be due for The Lodge, in Manchester Road Park, which has been home to Bury Employment Support and Training, and 18-20 St Mary's Place, a one-time base for the children's safeguarding board. New owners will even be sought for the site of the now-demolished police headquarters in Irwell Street.

Pinfold Lane day centre in Whitefield and Spurr House in Unsworth, where staff protested against a closedown as part of a social care reshuffle, have also been earmarked to go.

Town hall chiefs say consultations will take place with any council or other services occupying the 16 premises in question before they are hived off.

And the door is open for community organisations to express interests.

Cllr Eamonn O’Brien, council leader, said: “As a council we face significant financial challenges with a projected funding gap of around £11m by 2024/25, even after we deliver the current £22m savings.

“By disposing of council buildings that we no longer need, there will be fewer savings needed from frontline services. If any buildings are sold we will raise capital funding, and also save on the yearly costs of managing them.

“But I stress, even though we will be reviewing these buildings, no final decisions have been made yet. Selling buildings is not the only option. No services will be moved before alternatives are in place which we will fully communicate about.

“Disposal does not automatically mean sale. In fact, we are supporting a number of community groups to take over some of the assets we have previously agreed to dispose of. We have also held workshops with local councillors to outline the processes around these options and will continue to work with all those interested in the sites.

“We cannot take this lightly as an organisation and the only way to meet the challenge is through a co-ordinated strategy."