Planners have given the go ahead for Crown House in Huddersfield town centre to become student flats.

Councillors voted unanimously to grant approval for the 11-storey 1970s office block to house 198 studio flats arranged across nine floors.

The building could also include facilities for the student residents including a cinema, gym and rooftop garden.

Crown House in Southgate, which was home to the Department for Work and Pensions and later Huddersfield Job Centre, closed in 2019 and the building has remained derelict.

The building is close to the proposed £60 million Daphne Steele Health & Wellbeing Academy, currently under construction as part of the University of Huddersfield’s National Health Innovation Campus.

A meeting of Kirklees Council’s Strategic Planning Committee was told that the new-look Crown House would be covered in an aluminium cladding which would “reflect and respect” both the Daphne Steele building and traditional stone buildings nearby.

The cladding will be a soft grey with vertical stripes in a reflective copper colour.

Planning agent Mr David Tye, representing applicants Abode Manchester 2 Ltd, an experienced provider of student accommodation, said it was the company’s first investment in Huddersfield.

He said Abode had worked closely with council officers and the university and said the development would be “transformational for this part of town.”

As part of the scheme the developers will make a contribution to the council of £283,173 to improve public open space nearby along with a further £20,000 to improve two bus stops in Leeds Road to include the installation of real time displays.

Clr Bill Armer (Con, Kirkburton) proposed approval saying: “It’s a good use of a fairly unimposing building.”

His proposal was seconded by Clr Paul Davies (Lab, Holme Valley South) who said: “This building has been an eyesore for a long time and I am delighted to see it being re-purposed. We are seeing some exciting new areas appearing in Huddersfield.”

Councillors voted unanimously for approval.