WORK has started on a project which will see a former council building turned in to 17 new homes.

The Grade II listed Prospect House on Hallgate, formerly used as the offices of Tynedale District Council, will be brought back to life after years of standing empty.

Boards began to appear around the building as work began on a development which will see it turned in to 15 apartments and two cottages. The development is being carried out by Gosforth-based Lok Developments.

Although a planning application had previously been approved for 18 new homes, a further application was granted last year proposing the 17 residential units.

The existing Prospect House is to be converted into 15 apartments, which will be a mixture of one and two bedrooms and one three-bedroomed property.

There will be a three-storey extension which will replace the current 19th century single-storey extensions and the council chamber, following their demolition, which will house three of the apartments.

And a pair of semi-detached cottages will be developed on Hallgate, next to the existing cottages there.

There will also be 14 car parking spaces created behind the building.

The planning application was approved by officers at Northumberland County Council in December.