THE future of a former district council base should be decided in the coming weeks.

Teesdale House, in Barnard Castle, was the headquarters of Teesdale District Council until 2009 until it was put up for sale by Durham County Council.

The council transferred staff from the building to new offices based nearby at The Witham, in Barnard Castle.

With the move complete and Teesdale House now standing empty, county council officials hope new occupants will take up residence quickly.

Stuart Timmiss, the county council’s head of planning, said that tenders for Teesdale House had been received and were being studied.

He said the building had been marketed for use as offices.

Barnard Castle town councillor John Watson said any proposals for the building's future use would need to be looked at closely.

He told the town council's planning committee: “It is a complex piece of property, made up from several dwellings. It is also listed and in the conservation area.”

Mr Timmiss said the county council was aware of Teesdale House’s historic value and would arrange to speak to the town council about its future separately.

He added that he was aware of the value of getting Teesdale House back in to use to the community and local economy.