A FORMER mill building could be knocked down to make way for 30 new flats.

Developers have submitted proposals to Blackburn with Darwen Council seeking permission to build flats at Carr Cottage Mill in Whalley New Road, Blackburn.

Carr Cottage Mill was opened in 1870 by the Carr Cottage Mill Company, cotton manufacturers.

It was then used by Whalley New Road Manufacturing Company from 1903 to 1904 and extended in 1912 by owners Duckworth & Eddleston, cotton manufacturers.

In 1939 it was bought by John Duckworth & Son (Blackburn) Ltd.

Agent Craig Buck, of Accrington-based firm Intelligent Design Centre, said: "The application site is located on Whalley New Road with part frontage up to the public highway but not entirely across the length of the site.

"The site itself is mostly an industrial yard whilst the former mill building itself takes up about a quarter of the site area. Surrounding the site:

"This application is for the demolition of an aged industrial building and its attached external storage yard and the erection of a residential apartment block containing approximately 30 new dwellings in its place.

"The site is Carr Cottage Mill on Whalley New Road in Blackburn.

"The existing premises has become unsuitable for industrial use by the current owners due to logistical issues as a result of the site's currently poor vehicular access."

Mr Buck also cited a downturn in business and the poor condition of the existing building.

He added: "A number of possible options for the site have been considered, including the retention of the site for industrial use.

"However, due to the fact that the existing building is in a poor condition, the lessthan-ideal site access for larger vehicles and the lack of current demand for industrial space in the area, we believe it would be more appropriate to develop the site for other uses.

"The indicative proposal to accommodate the desired number of apartments (with necessary parking) is for a block of three-storeys apartments above ground floor car parking, cycle parking and bin storage.

"Due to the height of the neighbouring pub, raised level of the terraces on the opposite side of the road and the relatively steeply rising slope of the cemetery behind the site, we do not anticipate that the proposed height of the new building will affect any of its neighbours.

"The proposed building could incorporate a lift and an ambulant disabled staircase. The apartments would have suitable sized doors, adequate size bathroom facilities, accessible sockets, therefore making the development fully accessible to all.

"Secure cycle spaces will be incorporated into the lower floor parking space at a ratio of one per one-bed apartment and two per two-bed apartment."