FAMILIES are calling for action at an eyesore former social club – which has been boarded up for five years.
Hady residents are leading a campaign to see the facility, which included a licensed club with a small shop, brought back in to use.
At the height of its popularity, the building was a bustling miners welfare club but now stands derelict and is a “blot on the landscape.”
But owners Coal Industry Social Welfare Organisation revealed this week that plans were in the pipeline to turn the site in to a housing development.
Resident Margaret Arnold launched a petition two weeks ago, calling for the social club to be redeveloped for the community, and so far has gathered over 200 signatures.
She said: “The majority of residents are elderly people and ex miners wives and families who helped to provide this facility in the 1950s.
“It would absolutely devastate and isolate Hady if the site is cleared just for housing.”
She added: “We don’t want to regress back 50 odd years and be without a shop or facility for the community.
“It’s a blot on the landscape.”
Mrs Arnold said her son-in-law had applied to the owners to use the building as a social club but his offer had been rejected by the charity.
Chesterfield Borough Council has recommended that the building should be demolished but a spokesman for the authority said before the site was redeveloped efforts should be made to retain it for the benefit of the community.
Resident Tracey Turner said: “Since it closed it has been a scar on the Hady estate.
“Perhaps the best thing is for the building to be demolished and some new buildings erected.”
A spokesman for the Coal Industry Social Welfare Organisation said plans were being drawn up for a housing development with a ‘retail’ element for the site.
Donald Brookes, from the charity, said: “Previous attempts to obtain planning permission had not been successful but we are confident that this time there will be a positive outcome and that the site will be marketed under the new arrangements soon.
“I totally understand the frustrations of the residents here and also why they may wish to use the facility for an alternative purpose.
“In this case however we are bound by Charity Commission requirements to obtain the best deal possible for redundant charitable assets which would probably rule out any local applications for an alternative use.”