PLANS to fully reinstate the historic frontages of two buildings in a market town knocked down for safety reasons have been lodged with the local council.

Simon Stansfield, the owner of a former newspaper office and shop on King Street in Clitheroe’s conservation area, has promised to use the original stone in the replacement facades.

In the new planning application for the development he promises small changes to the new frontages to enhance their heritage character.

The facades were supposed to have been retained as part of a project to create two medium-sized retail premises and several flats.

Last month they were unexpectedly knocked down after a mains electricity cable was severed by contractors causing a public safety alert.

One building is the former office of the Clitheroe Advertiser and Times vacated in October 2014 and the second The Chocolate Box which closed last year after 91 years.

Ribble Valley Borough Council Liberal Democrat Leader Cllr Allan Knox, who represents Clitheroe’s Primrose ward, welcomed the latest plans as ‘a step in the right direction’.

The new application also replaces one of the originally proposed seven flats with an upper floor office for probable tenants of the larger retail unit Specsavers.

It confirms there will be a three-storey extension at the back of the properties and an ‘unsightly’ garage will be demolished.

It says: “The scheme will reinstate the façade of 3 King Street.

“It is proposed to recreate the building facade that was lost during the emergency demolition using the original stones which have been retained and stored for re-use including rusticated quoins, gutter support corbels and dressed stone window surrounds.

“The stonework will be neatly ‘keyed’ into the adjacent property using the correct sized stones and pointed with lime mortar. The existing modern window frame pattern was to be retained at first floor.

“It is now proposed to split the combined shop front so that it steps down with the slope of the street.

“This better reflects the character of the street and is a design improvement which enhances the historic significance of the conservation area. Similarly, the style of the first-floor windows is changed to traditional timber box sliding sashes which is an improvement and reflects period of when the building was first constructed.”

Cllr Knox said: “I welcome this application. It will reinstate the frontages using the original stone. It is a step in the right direction towards restoring 3 King Street.”

Planning agent Judith Douglas said: “The new planning application has been submitted and it is now with the council to consider.”