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DEMOLITION work is set to start today on the site of the old Southdown bus depot on London Road, Hilsea.

Construction firm Mansell Homes is to carry out the work demolishing the 1930s building and replacing it with homes on behalf of First Wessex.

The work is due to take between six and eight weeks to complete and staff were on site yesterday ahead of today’s demolition work starting.

Residents living nearby, as well as local businesses including The News, have been handed letters warning that the work is to start.

Contractors will start by taking the roof off, and will then take down the walls.

The housing firm will replace the art deco structure with a six-storey building with 59 flats and a doctor’s surgery.

There will also be a separate single-storey pharmacy with space for car parking, recycling and bike storage.

The Portsmouth City Council planning team gave the project the thumbs-up in February because it would finally get rid of an eyesore and make way for much-needed housing.

Award-winning Portsmouth demolition firm Hughes and Salvidge is also on site and involved in the work.