Together helps bring new lease of life to St Augustine’s Church in Stockport

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St Augustine’s Church

In recent years, local landmarks including pubs, churches, post offices and banks which dotted the UK’s highstreets have become prime property investment spots for developers.

Whether converted into short-term holiday lets or turned into permanent homes for buyers or renters – it’s a trend that shows no sign of slowing.

One example is the current development of St Augustine’s Church in Cheadle Heath, Stockport, by property developer, Nabeel Mussarat.

With the church and local congregation deciding the 19th century building was no longer functional for services due to electrical issues, they decided to move to a new location.

In July 2021, Mr Mussarat started work on the complete renovation of the building, having secured a development finance facility from specialist lender Together, with the aim to create nine new two-bedroom apartments – with almost all the homes now sold.

However, while the project has been an undoubted success, it wasn’t always smooth sailing.

To respect and preserve St Augustine’s Grade II listing, Nabeel Mussarat worked closely with Paul Farrell, head of Stockport Council Building Control in order to be in line with building and fire safety regulations.

The entirety of the exterior features had to be repaired, with particular focus on the brickwork, roof and stained-glass windows.

The general internal structure, being mostly wood, needed extreme renovation efforts to repair wood rot that had occurred during the period in which the building was empty.

On completion of the project, Mr Mussarat commented:

“I’m always on the lookout for new opportunities to invest locally and have a soft spot when it comes to restoring historic buildings, particularly when you know how much they’ve been cherished by the community over the years.

With this development, we are breathing new life into St Augustine’s, offering a chance for young people and their families to create new memories.

All this wouldn’t have been possible, without the ongoing support of Together who were quick to rise to the challenge and were on hand at every step of the project.”

Mark Holden, Relationship Manager Development Funding at Together commented:

“We’re seeing increased interest from property developers, particularly in the North West of England, in their local landmarks.

Turning sites such as St Augustine’s into a new 2-bed apartments is very appealing to buyers looking for a more unusual, yet affordable residence.

Our doors are always open when it comes to the preservation and redevelopment of our country’s most treasured sites, so long as the project makes sound financial sense, it’s always worth the conversation.”