What next for former Gilders car showroom on Ecclesall Road, Sheffield?

The former Gilder garage at Banner Cross.
The former Gilder garage at Banner Cross.

One of Sheffield’s best known showrooms has been cleared of cars - sparking intense interest in its future.

The former Gilders garage on Ecclesall Road South, Banner Cross, is standing empty after owners Scotts Developments sold three car franchises to Stoneacre.

Interested parties include an office occupier, gym, restaurant and shops, the firm says.

The building spent some time empty last year until it was revived as a car showroom in the autumn. It had been granted planning permission for a restaurant, houses and flats in 2010, but that lapsed after three years.

John Scotting, managing director of Scotts Developments, said: “Having sold our last three car businesses to Stoneacre, we are currently in the process of exploring a number of options that are on the table at our Banner Cross site.

““We have at least one party who is keen to relocate to Banner Cross and several others who have enquired about the site.

“Interested parties including gyms, restaurants and retail outlets who have approached us to discuss this particular site and we know that, because of its location, there aren’t many things that wouldn’t work there!”

Last year, Mark Tamblyn, Gilder’s general manager, said: “It’s quite an iconic site and Gilder’s has been around since 1938.

“I think VW left in January 2009 so when they moved up to Norton it’s been empty since then.

“We’ve seen an opportunity in the marketplace that we think we can fill through our expertise in the motor trade.”

However, Mr Tamblyn said the idea of the site being redeveloped had not been scrapped entirely.

“If, after bringing it back to life, in three or four years we decide to go ahead with the planning permission we will do so.”

The approved scheme involved keeping the 1950s showroom building and converting it into a ‘traditional-style’ farm shop with a restaurant or bar above.

A working group was set up to look at traffic issues. Bans on left turns from Ecclesall Road into Psalter Lane, and right turns into and out of the Gilder’s site, were proposed.