Family set to buy ex-police station

The main four-story building at the former Morpeth Police Station site.
The main four-story building at the former Morpeth Police Station site.

The historic frontages of the buildings at the former Morpeth Police Station will be preserved if its sale goes through as planned.

And the news that the Beattie family is in the final stages of buying the site in Castle Square has been welcomed by a town councillor.

Ken Beattie and Coun David Clark outside the four-story building at the former Morpeth Police Station site.

Ken Beattie and Coun David Clark outside the four-story building at the former Morpeth Police Station site.

It became available when local police moved to a town centre location last summer.

The four-storey building at the front of the site is of stone construction and it includes the old custody suite and cells.

Behind it are a number of garages and storerooms and the garages provide a link to a two-storey stone building at the rear of the site.

Businessman Ken Beattie, who is chairman of Morpeth Town FC, said: “The site carries a lot of history going back to the original jails and we’re looking to buy it because we see an opportunity to create a good centrepiece for Morpeth.

“We’re planning to convert the buildings into luxury apartments. We believe they will be popular as they will be a nice place in which to live.

“There are quite a few Morpeth buildings that aren’t protected which perhaps should be, but if the sale goes through, at this site we will retain the stone frontages and maintain the characteristics of the buildings in the upgrade.”

Northumbria Police put the site up for sale in order to save costs, although this also enabled the force to move officers and staff to a more accessible location (Austin House in Sanderson Arcade).

Morpeth town councillor David Clark said: “It’s fantastic news for this part of town.

“I was so afraid that yet more fine historic buildings would be demolished as the police station is not listed.

“Having campaigned to save the Willows for almost three years, this has given me fresh heart to continue my fight to stop their demolition.”