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Opportunity to convert Cumbria County Council’s former offices back to housing

Grade II listed buildings at Portland Square

A unique opportunity to acquire a collection of Grade II listed Victorian townhouses in the heart of Carlisle has become available through Savills northern development team. The collection of townhouses, which were formerly the principal offices of Cumbria County Council, have detailed planning consent for the conversion of the office space to 22 residential units.

The properties, which are situated at 1-20 Portland Square, 5 Brunswick Street and 1-5 Alfred Street North, collectively occupy a site of just over an acre and comprise of three blocks of properties arranged around the green space of Portland Square.

The three and four storey sandstone terraces were built in the late 1860s and early 1880s and whilst they were initially designed as private residences, many of the buildings were later occupied for business use. The design of the properties varies, but the buildings are typically Victorian in design and include graduated slate pitched roof, ashlar stone facades, bay windows and stepped access to portico entrances. Whilst their interiors have been altered over time during conversion from residential to office accommodation, they do still retain a number of period features including historic cornicing, fireplaces and staircasing. The central garden is public open space and is ringed by mature trees, which are a defining part of the character of the area.

Matthew Bell of Savills development team in the north, comments: “As one of Carlisle’s finest collections of period buildings, these terraces present a surviving example of a central urban Victorian residential square and as such, are of regional importance in terms of historic planned urban design and in the high architectural quality of external features and internal well-proportioned living accommodation.

“Situated within a sought after residential location, the site benefits from detailed planning consent for the conversion of the office space to 22 homes which would take them back to their original use, but it would also lend itself to a range of development scenarios, subject to obtaining the necessary consents. As a result of the high quality of the buildings on offer and their versatile nature, we are anticipating a high volume of interest from both local and national housebuilders and developers.”

Cumbria County Council has relocated to Cumbria House, a purpose built building on Botchergate in the town.

The properties are being marketed by formal tender and offers are invited on an unconditional basis by 12 noon on Friday 15 February 2019. Offers are to be submitted to Matthew Bell or Ed Rooney at Savills. For further information or to make an offer, contact Matthew on 07825 893 268 or email [email protected] or Ed on 0161 602 8211 or email [email protected].

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