Former courthouse is purchased
A former jail and courthouse at Wallace Green in Berwick, most recently used as council offices, has been bought by local building contractors GM Craig (GMC).
The firm plans to carry out essential maintenance before submitting plans for a residential conversion.
“This is a really exciting project,” said GMC director Neil Craig. “We are looking forward to carrying out vital maintenance to preserve the building before preparing a scheme to convert into a residential property.”
The building dates from 1844-49 and its frontage is unchanged from that time.
“We intend to preserve this outstanding example of Jacobean architecture in the heart of the town,” added Neil.
Coun Catherine Seymour, member for Berwick North on Northumberland County Council, said: “It is welcomed that this grand building on Wallace Green that has been sitting empty is to be regenerated back into use. The old jail and courthouse was Grade 2 listed recently because of its important townscape contribution to the Berwick conservation area and surviving internal features including the cells.
“With its splendid and significant heritage features, it is pleasing that the purchaser is planning to do, in good time, maintenance work to restore the fabric and facade.”
She added: “With its plentiful scope and strong character, it is hoped that sensitive plans for its future residential adaptive re-use will be made by the developer for retention of our built heritage.”
The building was occupied by the former Berwick Borough Council until local government reorganisation in 2009 and then by Northumberland County Council until 2015.