A DEVELOPER has submitted proposals to convert a 19th century hall once used as a catering college into housing.

Scheme Global Properties (Chester) Ltd has lodged plans to convert the Grade II listed Greenbank Hall in Eaton Road, Handbridge, into eight flats, divide its Grade II listed Gate Lodge into two dwellings and build four new houses in the grounds.

West Cheshire College, which owned the building until last year, had used the premises as its centre for the hospitality and catering.

A document supporting the plans states: “Since the West Cheshire College vacated the buildings in 2005 they have inevitably declined to a point where they are now seriously at risk.

“In order to safeguard their future our client intends to convert them to a mixture of flats and houses along with an enabling development of four new-build houses within the curtilage.”

The Greenbank site was acquired piecemeal between 1802 and 1821 by Joseph Bozley then extended by John Swarbreck Rogers in about 1821-25.

In 1907 the property was bought by Edward Peter Jones, owner of Wolverhampton Corrugated Iron Company’s works in Ellesmere Port.

He was a patron of the fine arts and had ambitious plans for the building and carried out extensive alterations to the building over 55 years of ownership.

Greenbank transferred in 1962 to Chester Corporation for educational use under E Peter Jones’s will, and it remained in local authority ownership as a teacher-training establishment until it was taken over by West Cheshire College in 1983.

The college came up with a plan to fund a proposed new college at Northgate Village by building 135 homes on its main Eaton Road campus plus offices and 13 homes at Greenbank but the scheme was rejected by the planning authority in 2006.