EMMANUEL Church in Leftwich is looking to move to a new home on nearby Leftwich Green.

The church is based in a 1970s building at the corner of Old Hall Road and Kenmare Bank, and is seeking planning approval to create a new church 200 metres away.

The new church would open up the opportunity for the community to be invited to use the building.

It would also have new uses, including a community café, slimming club, debt centre, internet café and children’s holiday clubs, and parts of the building would be available for private use.

The church is seeking planning approval for the new church and community facility from Cheshire West and Chester Council.

A planning statement accompanying the application said the church initially looked at the possibility of replacing the church and manse with a new building due to the poor layout, outdated construction standards and ‘poor design aesthetics’, because of the cost of repairing and refurbishing the existing buildings.

However the site is restricted, has a limited 28-space car park, and is closely bounded by neighbouring houses.

Subsequently Cheshire West and Chester Council said it would be willing to consider a community asset transfer to the church of 21 per cent of Leftwich Green.

“The new location would be a larger site to enable a better building and facility, with a much larger car park [88 spaces],” said the report.

“It would allow the new building to connect properly to the green space, and the new church and community building would fit well with the community purposes of the green space.

“The current building is tucked away, whereas the new building will be more visible and accessible to the community.

“To ensure no further development of the remaining green space is ever likely, it is proposed to initiate a Friends of Leftwich Green community group, which would have the status to apply for the space to be registered as an Asset of Community Value.”

This means the community would have first refusal to buy the remaining green space land, should Cheshire West decide to dispose of it.