THE first brick towards building a better future for a notorious York shopping centre has been laid by the Lord Mayor of York.

Coun David Horton marked the second phase of a community project that aims to transform the site of the recently-demolished Sanderson House, in Bramham Road, Chapelfields. The site, on which five shops and eight family flats were built in 1955, has been blighted by vandalism and other anti-social behaviour. The new £1.25 million scheme will see 11 affordable three-bedroom family homes and a specially-adapted home for wheelchair-users built by Tees Valley Housing.

A further seven homes are to be built on the site of the existing Chapelfields Community Centre, along with a new smaller centre and a convenience store.

Coun Horton said: "I welcome and congratulate local residents who have been actively involved in the consultation on the proposed development.

"I look forward to positive use being made of the community facilities and the shop provision as well as much-needed housing for York families."

Rosie Wall, chairwoman of the Chapelfields Resident's Association, said she was very pleased with the progress and looked forward to future developments.

Updated: 10:03 Wednesday, April 16, 2003