Bringing Redundant Farm Buildings Back Into Use

The Duchy of Lancaster has this month applied for planning permission to convert a redundant disused barn, stable block and cart-shed at Bantons Barn on the Wyreside estate in Lancashire into three new residential dwellings.

Bantons Farm is located on Chipping Road approximately half a mile south of the picturesque village of Dolphinholme and seven miles south of the historic city of Lancaster. The former farmstead includes a two-storey farmhouse with an attached bank barn. A single-storey stone outbuilding lies to the west of the farmhouse and to the south-west is a detached two-storey stable block with an adjacent cart shed. Although the farmhouse itself is Grade II Listed and bears a datestone of 1747 above the door, the other buildings were built approximately 100 years later and have been sitting empty and unused for several years.  

If the application is approved, the proposals will bring these old buildings back into use, retaining original features and using traditional materials to reflect their architectural heritage and the surrounding local environment.

Commenting on the project, Duchy Head of Rural Development Lara Thompson said: “The preservation of historic buildings and the opportunity to make them accessible to a new generation is a responsibility that the Duchy takes very seriously.  Our mission is to create sustainable and energy-efficient residential properties which bring redundant agricultural buildings back into use by making them fit for purpose and up to date while respecting the integrity of their architectural heritage. We believe that the sensitive re-purposing of these rural buildings at Bantons Farm will be of long-term benefit to the area and provide attractive, high quality and energy-efficient homes for local families.”

As part of the application process, the Duchy engaged Salford University’s Archaeology Department to undertake a full investigation of the historical, architectural and social significance of the site and buildings. The purpose of the report, which forms part of the planning submission, is to identify features of merit and prevent the loss of historic fabric during any redevelopment.

The Duchy of Lancaster’s Wyreside estate forms part of the Lancashire Survey which also includes estates in Whitewell, Myerscough and Salwick. Part of the ancient inheritance which began the Duchy in 1265, today the Wyreside estate comprises one main agricultural holding, four residential properties and 39 commercial and miscellaneous lettings, ranging from private fishing lakes to family camping and caravan parks.