DOZENS of new flats will be going on the market in Oldham after planning bosses gave the go-ahead for shops and offices to be turned over to housing.

In Oldham town centre, 19 studio apartments are to be built within a three-storey Victorian building, while in Failsworth a former furniture sales room is to be converted into 14 apartments.

The office building on Greaves Street, which is within the Oldham conservation area, was historically used as offices for printing firm Thomas Dornan Ltd.

Planning officers had queried whether the noise from the nearby commercial premises, as well as the busy main road and passing trams would cause "noise disturbance" to the potential tenants.

But after consulting with the council’s pollution control department, no formal objection was raised and the plan was approved.

The 19 studios will be managed by Yale Housing Ltd, and there will be a communal bin store and bike storage facility.

A supporting statement by Mark Jones Planning Consultancy adds: “The offices are currently vacant and the conversion to residential will provide much needed accommodation.”

Luckily for any future residents, the statement makes clear the site "does not fall within a safety hazard area and is not in a military explosives area".

On Oldham Road in Failsworth, planners have approved the first stage of a redevelopment of an empty retail and office building that ultimately will see it transformed into a block of 48 flats.

The ground floor will be divided into 14 apartments, eight of which will be two-bed and the remainder will have one bedroom.

A planning statement by Chris Megson states that the building is in in "comfortable walking distance of the town centre" and the proposals would not lead to any "detrimental residential, visual or highway impact".

“Whilst the loss of the potential employment-generating use of the property is a negative impact in economic terms, the wider social and environmental benefits associated with occupying a vacant building in a prominent location compensates for this loss,” he added.

Granting planning permission, case officer Matthew Taylor agreed that the site was in a "sustainable location" due to its proximity to "key services and public transport".

But planning chiefs also ruled that the developer, Mandale Apartments 2 Ltd, would have to pay £48,101 towards improving play equipment in Lower Memorial Park.