A VICTORIAN hospital looks set to be demolished amid fears it could become a target for arsonists, with warnings it is also being used for prostitution and drug taking.

Ysbyty Minffordd in Bangor, which has been closed for over a decade, was bought by Loughborough-based Rushcliffe Care Ltd who in 2011 revealed plans to convert it into a 36-bed specialist care facility, creating around 100 jobs.

The 19th century building remains untouched, however, having been placed on the market since 2017 with a £400,000 asking price with the approved planning permission having now expired.

But its owners are now seeking to demolish the buildings after fire safety experts warned it had become a magnet for anti social behaviour.

The report, put together following feedback from North Wales Police and the fire service’s Arson Reduction Team, found that the site was being used by youths from as far away as Holywell and that the buildings were “known to be a meeting place” with police “very concerned that drug dealers were targeting them.”

The police had also identified the former hospital as “being used for prostitution” with used needles also being found and homeless people using the site despite being declared unsafe.

“The police believe the escalation is significant and are concerned that a youth may get seriously harmed and as such, stresses that the site owners may end up bearing some responsibility.”

The report concluded, “Use of the facility in this manner is causing significant local concerns which has now included police briefings to schools and parents.”

A site assessment had also found all buildings to be unsafe with cement bonded asbestos also on site, with both police and the Arson Reduction Team supporting the principle of demolition.

The planning statement goes on to note, “The buildings on the site still remain and have been the subject of unauthorised trespass on multiple occasions.

“The trespass has included damage to the buildings, theft of materials from the site and fly tipping.

“The buildings and the activities associated with the trespass are of serious concern to the police and the local community.

“The concerns include potential harm to the trespassers as the

buildings structural stability cannot be guaranteed, the risk of exposure to asbestos containing materials and arson related hazards.

“Demolition of the buildings and site clearance would appear to the solution of the problems outlined above.”

Originally built in 1895, in 1948 it became a convalescent home before closing in 1984 following the opening of Gwynedd and Anglesey’s main hospital, Ysbyty Gwynedd.

Between 1988 and its closure in 2006 it served as a psychiatric unit for elderly patients until being put up for sale in 2009 by the then North West Wales NHS Trust.

It’s expected that a decision will be made by Gwynedd Council over the coming weeks, with the company proposing to carry out the demolition on April 30 if given the green light.