THE former magistrates’ court building in Rawtenstall will be transformed into 11 ‘top quality’ apartments if proposals are successful.

Rossendale Magistrates’ Court, which closed in 2011, could become home to one one-bedroom, eight two-bedroom, and two penthouse flats boasting three bedrooms if council planners approve the project.

The proposals for the courthouse, adjacent to listed building St Mary’s Chambers, have been submitted by Mohammed Khan, a commercial property owner from the town who recently bought the building.

Architect David Hancock, of DJ Hancock Design, said the plans will make good use of the 125-year-old building, making minimal changes to it.

He said: “It would be a very positive move. The work will be top quality.

“The exterior will be cleaned and brought back to the original way it was supposed to look.

“The damaged stonework will be repaired. We’ll only replace what is beyond repair. All of the apartments will be fitted with a rooflight.

“The institutional elements to the interior used by the court will be taken away and it will look very good.”

The building is identified in Rossendale Council’s Local Plan as a ‘positive high quality building’ that lies within the Rawtenstall Conservation Area.

There are 28 public spaces available on Haslingden Road and no restrictions for on-street car parking, which will be available to potential residents.