Talks held over Shrewsbury's empty House of Fraser store
Shrewsbury's landmark former Houser of Fraser store, which has stood empty for almost a year, could soon be undergoing improvements.
Local authorities in Shrewsbury are working together in a bid to improve the look of the vacant shop in High Street.
Shrewsbury BID and Shropshire Council have both been in contact with the new managers of the building.
Seb Slater, executive director of Shrewsbury BID, said: “We are in contact with CBRE who have recently taken over the day-to-day management of the building and have offered to work with them to urgently improve the poor appearance of the building.
“We understand that Shropshire Council are in ongoing discussion with the owners regarding the repurposing and reconfiguration of the building for sustainable long-term use.”
Mark Barrow, director of place at Shropshire Council, confirmed that talks were taking place with the building’s owners.
He said: “Shropshire Council is in dialogue with the owner of the House of Fraser building and is keen to understand the future options for its use in the wider context of the Shrewsbury Big Town Plan.”
Concerns had been raised that the building, which had been home to the former Della Porta shop and then Rackhams, had attracted rough sleepers to its doorways.
Laura Fisher, Shropshire Council housing services manager, added that the council was also taking action to support homeless people who were using the outside of the building as a temporary shelter.
She said: “The council is working in conjunction with the Rough Sleeper Outreach Team to support those at risk of sleeping rough.
"The council has successfully been awarded funding from MHCLG and is in the process of recruiting staff to expand this team to offer additional support and assistance to those who need it.”