MORE than two-dozen homes are set to be built on the site of a former Whitefield pub which was controversially closed earlier this year.

Planning permission has been granted to construct 27 apartments at the former Lord Clive in Mersey Drive which was recently demolished.

Building work is set to begin next month and is expected to be completed by 2022.

When finished the apartments will be made available to rent, at an 'affordable rate', through Onward Homes.

Construction will be led by developer and contractor firm Watson Homes.

Stephen Heverin, growth and regeneration director for Onward Homes, said: “We’re delighted to once again be working in partnership with Watson Homes to transform this site into much-needed homes for affordable rent in Whitefield.

"This latest development demonstrates our continued commitment to addressing housing need within the region and we look forward to delivering these quality homes, with further sites to follow in the future.”

In total 21 one-bedroom and six two-bedroom apartments will be built in a three-storey block on the site.

Each apartment will have a Juliet balcony and the contractors say the interiors will be fitted to a 'high standard'.

The block will also boast onsite car parking for 30 vehicles and landscaped private rear gardens.

The work comes six months after the pub was controversially closed in January.

Prestwich and Whitefield Guide: The Lord Clive pub in Mersey Drive, WhitefieldThe Lord Clive pub in Mersey Drive, Whitefield

Rob Watson, director at Watson Homes, said: “We worked closely with Onward Homes on these plans to provide much-needed, high-quality homes for the local area.

"We are mindful that the former pub was a key part of the community and we hope that these new homes provide future great memories for many.”

Until recently the pub had been occupied by tenant landlady, Leanne Doherty, who lived at and worked at the Lord Clive with her partner Dale and her four children.

Last summer, however, Miss Doherty was given just four weeks to find a new job and new home for herself and her family.

It came after a representative of brewery JW Lees visited the pub to give the family their legal notice, informing Miss Doherty that contracts have been exchanged with property developers and that a sale was imminent.

At the time Miss Doherty said that the family were "heartbroken" at the announcement, while members of the community were both "outraged and devastated" at closure.

A campaign was launched by residents of surrounding Hillock Estate to save the pub but this ultimately proved unsuccessful.