Old forensic lab goes to auction

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A former forensic science laboratory in Euxton, which was used to solve some of the most high-profile crimes in Britain in its heyday, will be offered for sale in an auction next week.

The high-security facility at Washington Hall, in Euxton, has been empty since the Government-owned Forensic Science Service closed in 2011.

It will be on offer today at an auction in Manchester by Eddisons, a firm of chartered surveyors. The guide price is £400,000.

James Worthington, director at Eddisons, said: “It has had a good level of interest and we are expecting it to sell.”

The site neighbours the new Chorley fire station and Lancashire Fire And Rescue Service’s training centre on Washington Lane.

It comprises a range of office and laboratory type buildings extending to approximately 38,000 sq ft.

Tony Webber, director and auctioneer at Eddisons, said: “This is a major site in a convenient location close to junction eight of the M61.

“The existing buildings may offer a refurbishment opportunity, while the overall site could suit wider redevelopment, subject to planning.”

Scientists at the Forensic Science Service laboratory helped to solve some of the most high profile crimes in recent years.

They were key in bringing Harold Shipman, Rose West and Ipswich prostitute killer Stephen Wright to justice, and they also worked on the Shannon Matthews abduction, as well as the murders of Garry Newlove and Sophie

But the laboratory was one of three closed as part of a restructure of the service, which was estimated to be losing £2m a month at the time.

Up to 200 jobs were thought to have been lost in the area.

Chorley MP Lindsay Hoyle battled to stop the closure, and has since spoken out about the effect of it shutting.

He warns that major crimes are being left unsolved as private forensic firms are ‘cherry-picking’ the most profitable jobs.

- There will be 37 lots for sale at the auction on Tuesday, which starts at 12.30pm at the Premier Inn in Trafford Park.