SHORT-TERM tenants are being sought at two shop units in an eyesore building in York.

Two-year leaseholders are being sought at empty retail units which are part of the ground floor of the partially derelict four-storey White Swan Hotel in Piccadilly.

It could be a prelude to finally reopening or even demolishing the mock Tudor structure, which is believed to be worth more than £2 million, but has not been used commercially since it was closed in 1982.

One of the units was occupied by Going Places travel agency until its lease ran out last year.

The London owners of the White Swan are looking for annual rents there of £15,000 exclusive. The rates bill would be £14,242.

The other unit is a former lock up shop, where the rent will be £15,000 per year exclusive, with annual rates of £5,170.

Robert Lane, director of Lane Walker, commercial property consultants, told the Evening Press the London owner of the former hotel had died and there had been "extended probate".

However, the owner's son, who was in the property sector, was determined eventually to act on the eyesore.

"Plans are being drawn up over the next year, looking at either demolishing it or refurbishing behind the faade," he said.

The problem of the dilapidated former 50-room hotel, nightclub and restaurant was highlighted in May 2003, when more than 30 squatters took control of the property and began guided tours and art exhibitions. They were evicted after two months.

The building, declared unfit for habitation in 1992, topped a poll as the city's biggest eyesore in an Evening Press Proud To Be York campaign seven years ago.

Mr Lane said: "The owners are determined to do something about The White Swan and, meanwhile, need to get some income."

Updated: 11:20 Tuesday, February 14, 2006