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The 200-year-old building has been empty for four years. Submitted by Wetherell Investments, a Harrogate company, the scheme has the backing of the Pontefract Civic Society.

Civic society chairman Paul Cartwright said: “It seems like a good scheme and we are pleased with what we have seen. An antiques centre will probably go down well here.”

The society works towards championing the West Yorkshire town and has high hopes that the new antiques centre could trigger other improvements in Pontefract.