Muir delighted historic Holywood building set to be saved

Plans for One Stewart’s Place in Holywood to be restored have been given the green light, Councillor Andrew Muir has said, almost two years after the building’s dilapidated state initially caused chaos and concern.

Welcoming the news Councillor Muir said he was “delighted” the historic building was now set to be saved, after months of constant lobbying secured the future of a building seen by many as “a real jewel in Holywood’s built heritage”.

He added: “Over the past few years we’ve witnessed the partial collapse of the building, leading to closure of the road for a substantial period of time – as concerns raged over who would take the building on and what the final decision would be around its future.

“Stewart’s Place is part of our local heritage dating back to about 1840, named after the first post-master of Holywood, Hugh Stewart. Number 1 and 3 Stewart’s Place are part of a pair and were both listed in the 1970s with Number 3 restored as a Residential Building in 1993.

While it couldn’t continue in its current state, with the disruption that came with this actually hindering life in Holywood, it is welcome to hear planning permission has finally been granted to Lacuna Developments to enable the full restoration of the once much loved site. Many thanks to Lacuna Developments for preserving and overcoming some of the unnecessary hurdles placed by statutory agencies in order to get the green light to proceed.

“I’m delighted to have been one of the voices championing this local cause alongside Holywood Conservation Group and look forward to watching Stewart’s Place returned to its former glory when work gets underway later this year.”

Also commenting on the issue, Mr Larry Thompson RIBA, Chair of the Holywood Conservation Group stated that “the committee and members of Holywood Conservation Group are delighted and pleased that this listed building has received Planning Approval for refurbishment and conversion to apartments, and that work on site has, at long last, commenced. Holywood Conservation Group campaigned hard over the past ten years to prevent the building from being demolished, including placard demonstration and the fitting of look-a-like false windows to give the building some visual appeal over the many years it lay vacant.”

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