Home of Waterloo Road set to be knocked down

Date published: 02 November 2011

The former Hill Top School – famous as the home of TV drama Waterloo Road – is set to be demolished.

The school, on Hill Top Drive, and the adjacent Rochdale Borough Training Unit have been home to the show since 2006 but now that production is to move to Scotland and no future use for the buildings have been identified it is proposed they are knocked down.

Councillors will decide whether to bring the bulldozers in at a meeting next week.

A report due before Councillors reads: “No use can be identified for the buildings in the short to medium term.

“If not demolished they would be empty, incurring costs for security and presenting high health and safety risk.

“It would not be appropriate to seek a use for the buildings in the longer term because the site is identified as part of the approved clearance programme for the implementation of the Kirkholt regeneration plan.”

The proposal is for demolition to take place as soon as the programme vacates the premises in January 2012.

SHED Productions, the makers of Waterloo Road, have renewed a lease with the Council yearly since 2006, paying a fee of around £35,000 for each lease period. They also provided all maintenance and security for the site.

Under arrangements for ending the lease they will pay the Council £40,000 towards the demolition costs – making it possible to clear the site in early 2012 at ‘minimal cost to the council.’

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