Historic Northampton building to become flats

editorial image

A historic factory building in Northampton will be converted into 17 flats after proposals to turn it into six new homes fell through.

The art-deco Pearce Leatherworks factory complex in Wellingborough Road, Billing closed in 2001.

Work is now underway to turn the complex into housing and this week, Northampton Borough Council’s planning committee gave permission for the factory’s old power house to be converted into 17 apartments.

Councillors heard the plans were put together after earlier proposals to convert the building into six homes were scrapped because of the downturn in the housing market.

Welcoming the development, Councillor Mike Hallam (Con, Parklands) said: “I would prefer to see its use carry on as a leather factory, but that’s not going to happen, so I think we have to support this.”

The leatherworks was built in 1939 and was operational until 2001 when it closed following pressure from foreign imports .

At one point, it was suggested part of the former factory complex could have been converted into a leathercraft museum, but that plan never materialised.

Councillor Jamie Lane (Con, Boothville) said: “I think it’s a shame that a listed building has been left to deteriorate like this.

“It was planned to turn it into a museum at one point and that would have been fantastic, but as long as it’s going to be used for something, I welcome this.”