COUNCIL chiefs want to develop the land outside the front of a Hyndburn landmark.

A planning application has been submitted by Mark Pickup of the council's parks, open spaces department for the front of Mercer Hall on Queen Street.

The current area is concrete flags and in the planning documents it says they are in a 'poor condition' and they want to 'remove the raised planters and resurface the area using a natural sandstone paving material that compliments Mercer Hall'.

Also the plans will see the existing seating being rearranged and also providing a similar space.

In the planning documents it said: " The forecourt to the hall is recognised as welcomed public space as many of the surrounding streets are of tight-knit urban development with few significant designed public spaces.

"Currently the forecourt consists of concrete paving flags, street furniture consisting of Victorian style lighting columns, cycle stands, formal benches and two purpose made raised planters.

"The raised planter flower beds, have been poorly maintained during recent years and have become infested with mares tail a particularly troublesome weed which is difficult to control and detracts from the purpose of the raised beds, originally designed as a place to provide a quality horticultural display.

"These two beds do not complement the building, which dominates the space, and do not enhance the conservation area and as such the proposal is to remove them and simplify the area with some quality paving and a considered seating arrangement.

"This will allow the building to dominate the space further and add to the character of the conservation area."

Mercer Hall opened in 1921, it was initially used as a public hall but was later converted to public baths and this remains today.

Cllr Noordad Aziz, who represents the Netherton ward, said: "Mercer Hall is the focal point of the town and it is important that we take care of it and it stays that way.

"Great Harwood's high street is on the up and we have to make sure it stays like that.

"If we improve the frontage outside of this impressive building and make sure it is a great entry point for people to sit."