Conversion from ground floor retail (class E) to 2 residential holiday lets short-term lets and on upper levels 8 one and two bedroom apartments for mixed use holiday lets and C3 residential, proposed 3 storey rear extension, balconies to rear, external alterations and partial demolition.
The Committee considered a report of the Principal Planning Officer which provided details of a Conversion from ground floor retail (class E) to 2 residential holiday lets short-term lets and on upper levels 8 one and two bedroom apartments for mixed use holiday lets and C3 residential, proposed 3 storey rear extension, balconies to rear, external alterations and partial demolition at 47 Newgate, Bishop Auckland (for copy see file of minutes).
The Principal Planning Officer provided a detailed presentation of the report and included site location plans, aerial photographs and photographs of the site.
Councillor Brown had visited the area recently and it was sad that what once was a wonderful land thriving town like Bishop Auckland had resulted in a mass of empty shops. With regards to NDSS the short term did not pose a problem but if they were long term maybe it would.
She asked what the smallest size bedroom was and the Principal Planning Officer advised that in terms of the national space standards the rooms should be a minimum of 11.5m2 and some of them fell a metre below but when considering the benefits such as bringing the building back into use and the use it was intended, the minor conflicts were considered to be outweighed.
Councillor Brown moved the recommendation to approve.
Councillor Adam referred to the use for short term lets and asked how this could be monitored. The Principal Planning Officer advised that the two ground floor units were to be used as holiday lets, and there was a condition that required the applicant to keep register and the Council could investigate and take action if required.
Councillor Richardson asked a question regarding parking provision and the Principal Planning Officer advised that none had been proposed, however this was a town centre location, which was accessible and there were public car parks in the vicinity.
Councillor Atkinson advised that this change of use would increase footfall into the town, but at the same time he was slightly worried about what would happen to town centres. He seconded the motion to approve.
Councillor Adam asked for clarification on the parking to the rear of the property and the Principal Planning Officer advised that the parking that had been mentioned were public car parks.
Councillor Richardson referred to this particular area as having been used for parking but there was an attempt to stop parking a few years prior and former Councillor J Clare had planned to create a car park which never came to fruition.
That the application be APPROVED subject to the conditions outlined in the report.