Sale could revamp 'wreck' of Blurton's The Swallows Nest pub
FAMILIES living near a derelict pub hope the building will be transformed after it goes up for auction next week.
The former site of The Swallows Nest, in Ufton Close, Blurton, has been boarded up for more than 10 years.
And it has become a frequent target for vandals and arsonists, with residents branding the spot a hazard.
Now the building is due to go under the hammer at a Butters John Bee auction a week today.
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The sale will take place at the Moat House Hotel, Festival Park.
Councillor Neil Day, who represents the Blurton ward on Stoke-on-Trent City Council, said the site has been a problem for too long.
"When I was getting to know the area, I came across The Swallows Nest and I couldn't believe my eyes," he said.
"It's a complete wreck of a building, boarded up with glass everywhere.
"It's been closed for over a decade and I still hear reports from residents about vandals and people throwing bricks from the roof.
"There are abandoned cars, there's fly tipping, it's a disgrace.
"Even if they flatten the building, it would still be a place for people to leave rubbish and cause trouble.
"The best use of the land would be develop the building properly and for it to become a hub for the area.
"A company like Stafford Housing or Aspire would probably do a really good job of putting the place to good use."
The guide price for the property is £70,000 to £80,000, but there are around £20,000 of land charges attached to the site that a buyer would have to pay the council.
Mr Day said he wanted to ensure a new owner will be aware of the implications of buying the site.
He added: "My concern is that someone will buy the property on a whim, thinking they can sell it on for profit, unaware of the land charges attached to the property.
"I know the city council has taken steps to ensure we will be in no worse a position after the auction than we are now.
"I'm quite hopeful that this will have a positive outcome."
Residents neighbouring the pub have expressed concern about the outcome of the auction.
Mary James, aged 53, who lives on the estate, said: "There is broken glass all over the car park outside the pub.
"It's a total mess and children use it as a playground.
"I think they should flatten it. But it's been empty so long, I think people round here have just given up on it."
John Hammond, aged 41, from Waterside Drive, added: "I just hope it ends up in the right hands. Maybe they will turn it into shops or nice flats."