THREE badly flood-damaged ‘eyesore’ buildings in Darwen town centre have been bought and are being refurbished.

The two shops and a residential property on the corner of Railway Road and Knott Street were severely undermined when they were inundated with water when a culvert collapsed during heavy rains in July 2012.

Repeated heavy downpours that summer caused flood damage to drains, sewers, culverts, roads and buildings.which cost £500,000 to repair with works continuing into 2015.

The three buildings have remained empty and boarded up since then and become an ‘eyesore’ according to Darwen Town Council Mayor Cllr Roy Davies.

Now they have been bought by a purchaser understood to have existing business interests in the town.

Workmen have now moved in to start repairing, rebuilding and refurbishing he premises for commercial and residential use.

Sudell ward Liberal Democrat Cllr Davies and Sunnyhurst Labour councillor Dave Smith have welcomed the news that the three properties are being brought back into use and good condition.

Cllr Davies said: “This is good news and I think this will be a boost for Darwen’s daytime economy.

“These buildings had become something of an eyesore and I am absolutely delighted they are being brought back into use.

“Workmen are in there at the moment doing up the properties.

“I hope the new owner will keep the two shops and make them interesting retail promises rather than yet another take-away.

“I have written to Blackburn with Darwen borough council to ask whether they spent any money on shoring up these buildings and whether they have been paid it back or arrangements have been made to recover the cost.”

Cllr Smith said: “I am really glad someone has bought these buildings and is bringing them back into use.

“It will cost a lot on money as they were in a real state.

“They are in a prominent position in Darwen town centre and refurbishing them will really make a difference.”

Cllr Smith, also chairman of the borough planning committee, added:”I will be keeping a close eye on this to find out exactly what is proposed but I understand it is a mix of retail and residential use.”