Historic Bolton property dating back centuries set to be auctioned

12 Churchgate

A centuries-old property in Bolton is to be auctioned next month, with a guide price of just £32,000.

The price reflects the work that needs to be undertaken on the site, Number 12 Churchgate, which is part of the town’s rich history.

It will feature in an online auction conducted by auction house Pugh, which has sold lots totalling more than £45m at its auctions which have been held on the firm’s online platform since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.

The two-storey, Grade II building adjoins the famous Olde Man and Scythe inn, the town’s oldest pub and the fourth oldest in the UK, dating back to 1251.

Said to be haunted, the venue is infamous as the place where James, seventh Earl of Derby, spent his last night, before being beheaded at the market cross in October 1651 for his connection with the Bolton Massacre during the Civil War.

Number 12 Churchgate itself was a temperance bar known as Smokey Joe’s in the 19th century, becoming a coffee bar in the 1940s.

In 2007 the 1,150 sq ft property was turned into a jewellery and gift shop and psychic centre, with a line in clairvoyancy, crystal ball and palm readings.

Pugh managing director, Paul Thompson, said: “This is a rare opportunity for an investor to buy a slice of Bolton history and to create a new incarnation for this fabulous old building that is something of a quirky landmark in the town.

“Unsurprisingly, for a property of this age, a programme of restoration work is needed, as the first floor is unstable, but the property is in a great central location and, with some investment, could become a real asset to the community once again.”

Bidding on 12 Churchgate, and the other lots in Pugh’s online auction, opens on July 20, and closes the following day.