Two Victorian houses which began to collapse while the basements were being converted for use as a HMO (Houses of Multiple Occupancy) on Manchester Road – are going to be restored and converted in to flats for rent after pressure from local residents.

Developer Michael Gerrard, of North London Based Investland Group Plc presented the new plans to residents to garner their support. He desperately needs to start rebuilding NO6, which is just a frame, before the winter sets in or otherwise the house could be unsalvegable.

Residents were cautiously optimistic with many wanting the work completed as soon as possible given the huge amount of disruption it has already caused to their lives.

Mr Gerrard has also had four pre planning applications with the council which are limiting the number of rooms for HMOs to just three in NO8 which has already been refurbished. These will be single occupancy only. There will be a two bedroom flat on the second floor spread across both buildings and the rest will be a mix of studios and flats with a total occupancy of 13 across four floors including the basements.

The high spec one bedroom studios are likely to be marketed for around £950 a month.

Because there is no affordable housing there will be an S106 contribution but there is no requirement to provide any parking spaces on the already car congested Manchester Road.

Mr Gerrard has made a number of improvements to the existing site and pledged that a caretaker would be responsible for the maintenance of the properties once completed including putting the bins out on rubbish days.

He said he planned to sue the structural engineer over the collapse of NO6.