Haith's birdseed factory could be demolished to make way for 14 new homes
ONE of the area's most successful factories could be demolished to make way for 14 new homes.
The owners of Haith's birdseed factory, in Park Street, have applied to North East Lincolnshire Council for permission to demolish the pre-Second World War building.
At the same time, they have submitted separate plans to demolish the factory outbuildings in Brereton Avenue, Cleethorpes – opposite the Park Street site – to build six homes. Both areas are brownfield sites and developers argue they are no longer fit for employment purposes.
Jennifer Ashworth, a senior planner for Spawforths, which is handling the application, said: "This will regenerate two brownfield sites by making better use of them. We are confident it will complement the surrounding land uses and it will provide much-needed housing for the area."
The exact design is not set in stone because the applications are only for a change of use and access at this stage.
However, preliminary plans for Park Street vary from two-storey to three-storey houses and apartments and the six in Brereton Avenue will be two-storey, with two semi-detached and four terrace houses. Access will be from the existing access into Brereton Avenue and new access into Park Street from the avenue is planned.
Some gardens of the existing homes border the factory, but Mrs Ashworth stressed: "We will not be doing anything that will be detrimental to the neighbours' properties."
The derelict buildings have been empty for four years and have attracted vandalism and anti-social behaviour.
Haith's is a family-run business, starting in a small pet shop in the 1930s and growing into a multi-million-pound company selling all over the world.
They took on the Park Street factory, an old chapel, in 1947, converting this and adjoining buildings into a warehouse and offices before moving to the Europarc complex in 2008.
The Haiths have tried to sell off the factory and outbuildings for a number of years, but have failed in the current market.
Mrs Ashworth continued: "The sites are no longer adequate for employment and this is a better solution.
"Currently there is a lot of vandalism, people are getting into the building which is leading to anti-social behaviour. People want to see it being used for something and we believe this will be good for the area.
"The comments we have got back have been relatively positive. Where people have been concerned it has just been because it is something different for the area. People naturally want to know what is going on and we want to work with people.
"People have commended us for regenerating brownfield sites in this hard economic time."