A FORMER hotel built to embrace the expansion of the railway has been sold for redevelopment.

Developers hope to transform the Coachman Hotel, situated at the entrance to Darlington Railway Station, into 39 apartments and studios with a basement gym following the granting of planning consent.

The sale of the hotel, which closed in 2015, to Empire Property Holdings was handled by YoungsRPS’ on behalf of the building's owner.

Paul Fairlamb, commercial property chartered surveyor at YoungsRPS, said: “The company has plans to convert the property into luxury apartments which, due to their location, will have excellent access to local amenities and transport links to the rest of the region and beyond. We look forward to seeing the property refurbished and brought back into use.”

Speaking about the purchase, Paul Rothwell, managing director of Empire Property Holdings, said: “We are delighted to have acquired The Coachman Hotel which we will be converting into 39 one bedroom apartments and studios.

“The property’s central location, near to the train station, makes the development ideal for commuters and local working people.

“Our successful track record is based on providing quality accommodation and affordable rent levels and we are sure that this formula will be a success here in Darlington.”

A multi-million pound scheme, Darlington 2025, to transform Bank Top station into a modern transport hub was announced earlier this year.

And plans to redevelop the station include making it ready for HS2 trains.