THIRTY new student apartments could be located opposite Accrington Town Hall as part of regeneration efforts.

Developers have earmarked the first and second floors of the Burton’s Building, across the town square from the Hyndburn Council headquarters, for the move.

The announcements is the latest boost for the Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI), which is aiming to overhaul Blackburn Road’s outlook.

Yesterday the Lancashire Telegraph revealed that more than 20 enterprises had expressed an interest in the THI scheme.

Following on from the unveiling of the new town square, traders and businesses can apply for a share of a £1million renovation fund, to improve frontages along Accrington’s main thoroughfare.

Proposals for the latest venture were first raised by London-based applicant Stuart Hammond in 2007, his representatives say.

Planning agent Peter Humphries said in a statement: “The proposed building is directly opposite the town hall and regeneration of the upper floors, that have been vacant for 10 years, and refurbishment of existing shop fronts would benefit the THI scheme.”

Each of the apartments would be one-bedroom and no parking provisions are afforded, given the proximity of the building to the main bus and rail routes.

The last registered use for part of the upper floors, according to the agent, was for an antiques business. Another planning permissions was granted previously for 20 apartments there.

Major external repair plans for the retail premises at ground floor level, along Blackburn Road and nearby Dutton Street and St James Street, have also been laid out.

Betfred and Bright House bookend the main frontage but a number of the properties in between are vacant.

One of the curiosities of the Accrington Burton’s Building is that, like a number of others, it bears a foundation stone laid by one of proprietor Montague Burton’s immediate family.

Barbara Jessie Burton, his only daughter, is named on the 1927 datestone for the structure, situated near a doorway on Dutton Street.