CITY leaders have agreed to buy the site of a York office block regarded by many as the city’s worst eyesore, with the aim of moving its redevelopment forward.

The freehold of Stonebow House will come under the sole control of City of York Council once it buys North Yorkshire County Council’s share for £62,250.

The authority is in talks with the administrators of the company which holds the leasehold on the 1960s office block about its future.

The council has said all options for the site will be considered, and although no decisions have been taken, demolition has not been ruled out.

The freehold, the purchase of which was approved by the authority’s Labour cabinet this week, covers the long-term ownership of the land and the building.

Stonebow House was part of the Tawny property portfolio - also including Clifton Moor Industrial Estate and York Business Park - whose value had fallen by an estimated £160 million when property services company DTZ were appointed as its receivers last autumn.

Council officials said sole ownership of the freehold would simplify any future development of the site.