PLANS have been revealed to demolish a popular ballroom in Leigh – and build a block of flats in its place.

SK Architects has submitted the plans for Arlington Rooms, London Road.

They include ten flats, ten parking spaces and 20 bike spaces.

Venue owner William Verner said it was business as usual at the moment.

He added: “We refer people to the introduction statement made by the developers.

“We will continue to take and honour all bookings.”

However, a councillor doesn’t like the plans and has raised concerns over loss of the venue.

Peter Wexham, Liberal Democrat councillor for Leigh ward, said: “I would rather it stays.

“It did close once before and I know it caused issues. Currently, people can hire it out for all sorts of events and occasions.

“This is a lovely art deco style building, but is not listed.

“It is not a very big site and to put a block of flats like this there will cause traffic issues.

“It is a well-known and popular venue and if it closed down I think residents will think were do they go from here.

“Traffic, congestion and parking is already an issue here, so this will make it worse.”

A design and access statement from the developers states the plans are part of continued work to regenerate this area of Leigh.

It states: “The application of the Arlington Rooms, London Road, provides opportunity to continue the renewal and regeneration along this key artery running through Leigh into Southend.

“This part of the London Road is characterised by a strong linear building line both against the back edge and set back from the public footpath.

“The site also provides excellent connection to the centre of Leigh, which is a five-minute walk to Leigh Road which runs into Leigh Broadway and a ten or fifteen minute walk from Chalkwell Train Station serving into London Fenchurch Street or Southend Central.

“Redevelopment of this site will require a contextual, creative and responsive design approach to enhance the existing townscape and urban fabric fabric of A13 London Road.

“The proposed redevelopment considers residential uses to contribute to the renewal and redevelopment of the A13 environs.

“This will improve the townscape.”

It’s unclear whether the developer has bought the land or the owner is selling the business.

The owner would not comment on this.

The developer was contacted for comment on criticisms and ownership.