Councillors are considering new plans to refurbish the vacant Red Lion pub in Patricroft, Eccles, to build four one-bed affordable apartments.
The former pub on Chapel Street, behind Eccles Fire Station, closed in 2006 and has remained derelict since then.
The building itself dates back to the 1840s and was originally called the Egerton Arms with a front door to George Street.
But despite its popularity as a local pub, after years of neglect it was left to rack and ruin.
Police even discovered the building was at one point being used by criminals as a cannabis farm – with offenders going to great lengths to conceal over 70 plants inside.
Once police had cleared the drug operation and removed heating and lighting equipment, new owners PBH Shopfitters stepped in to give the derelict pub a new lease of life.
PBH purchased the two-storey property in 2008, stripping it down to bare brick and adding a new roof to secure the site.
Planning documents state: “wThe existing building is to be retained as much as possible…due to the age of the property it is intended to maintain as much of the existing structure as possible which despite its age is in good condition.”
PBH co-owner Graham Knott told SalfordOnline.com: “We wanted to rejuvenate the Red Lion as it was once a popular and busy city pub, without losing the character of the area.
“There was a wonderful old-fashioned timber bar inside at one point, but unfortunately the previous owners gutted the property and took out most internal fixtures of value, presumably to sell on.
“You see so many old pubs being demolished entirely and these new builds being put up in their place.
“It was a bit of an eyesore from the outside with boarded up windows and doors, but still you hate to see historic buildings disappear entirely.
“The building will stay as it is under our plans, and we’ll keep the beautiful Red Lion facade which reads ‘Beers and Stouts’.”
If approved, the four one-bed, one-bath flats of around 540sq ft each will be put on the market for affordable rent.
Graham added: “A lot of new builds are still pricing out local people even if they’re marketed as ‘affordable’.”
“Rather than knock it down we wanted to retain that historical character and we’ll look to rent them at an affordable level.”
The plans are now being considered by Salford City Council with a decision expected by early 2016.
Main image by Kev Dol via panoramio.