Historic Baildon Hall Club hopes to sell part of its car park for property development and so raise cash to save the Grade II-listed manor house from ruin.

Baildon’s oldest building is run as a private members’ club, but is struggling to survive due to crippling repair costs, says owner, the Baildon Hall Company, in a new planning application for a house to be built on its top car park: “Over the past few years, due to the general economic downturn and changes in social behaviour, the club has seen a steady decrease in takings and a dramatic decline in new members.

“Faced with increasing maintenance costs and a reduction in revenue, the directors of the Baildon Hall Company have been forced to find other ways of raising funds for the necessary up keep of a historic building,” it says in submitted documents.

The non-profit-making organisation plays host to groups such as historical societies, antiquarian groups and local school children and said any cash raised from the development would go on urgent repairs and maintenance bills.

The application states that the proposed new home would mean the loss of seven parking spaces which were no longer required.

“It is felt that the reduction in spaces would not impact on the running of the club and could possibly offer a solution to the current situation,” says the club’s Barbara Boyes.

“It is feared that should the planning application not be successful, the future of the club and the hall will be bleak, leaving the building to deteriorate further.”

The proposed new house would be built in stone and with features such as mullion windows and be in keeping with the hall.

Baildon Hall was built by Robert Baildon during the mid-1500s on the site of a medieval Manor House, parts of which still remain.