ACTION is needed over a row of eyesore buildings on a main route into the town centre - according to neighbouring business people.

Former Italian restaurant Gusto, Greenhouse health centre and the Golden Dragon Chinese takeaway on Sheffield Road look shabby and rundown, they say, and are blighting efforts to smarten up the area.

Gusto has been empty for more than 18 months and there are broken windows and metal shutters over the doors, Greenhouse has been closed for longer and was victim of a serious fire, while the Chinese has been closed since March when its roof collapsed under the weight of snow.

Staff at neighbouring firms Auto Money, Bennett's Motorcycles and CC Interiors, says Gusto's dilapidated condition is the one causing most concern as it is such a large, prominent building.

The state of the building is a concern for neighbouring business because it has become a beacon for vandals and there are fears it may fall victim to arsonists.

The owner of CC Interiors furniture store, Cheryl Brown, has been trying for some time to find out who Gusto belongs to.

Cheryl said: "It's an eyesore and we've been asking the council about it for a while but no-one seems to know anything.

"It really lowers the tone and something needs doing."

Cllr Margaret Bruff said the state of the buildings is a major concern as it's very important to have good-looking gateway routes into the town.

"It's a major concern because it brings the look of the whole area down and being a gateway into the town it doesn't help our image," she said.

"We have got officers looking into it to find out where the owner is and approach them and try to get something done."