Objections to bid to convert listed Finedon building into house

Former heritage centre could become a one-bed home

Wednesday, 9th June 2021, 2:28 pm
Updated Wednesday, 9th June 2021, 2:30 pm
The former Quaker meeting house in Finedon
The former Quaker meeting house in Finedon

Finedon Town Council is objecting to an application to convert a Grade II listed building and the town’s former heritage centre into a one-bedroom house.

An application has been made to convert the building in High Street to a house, demolish the rear extention, erect a single storey rear extension, install rooflights to the rear elevation and make external alterations.

North Northamptonshire Council’s Local Area Planning Committee is due to consider the application, which is recommended for approval, at a meeting tomorrow (June 10) at the council chamber at Swanspool House in Wellingborough.

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A second application has been made for listed building consent for the conversion of the centre which is also recommended for approval subject to conditions.

FinedonTown Council is objecting on the grounds of the inappropriate use of the listed building, the ground surrounding the property being a graveyard and the property is next to a school on a blind bend without any off-street parking.

One letter of objection was received by the council from an occupier of a property in the vicinity of the site on the High Street.

The objection is summarised as follows: Visibility would be worsened by on-street parking by the site; Consider the study to be a second bedroom and so possibly more cars; Concern about the narrow gap between the rear extension and the listed barn wall which would attract debris and not allow room for maintenance of the wall.

A report to the committee states the site is located on the northern side of High Street.

It is a former Quaker Meeting House and was listed in June 1970 as ‘John Drage Chapel of Rest and attached walls’

Within the site, to the east of the building, is a burial ground associated with the former use of the site as a Quaker Meeting House.

Finedon Local History Society was set up in 2000 and started using the building a year later.

The society stopped using the premises in 2019 and moved over to the Mission Room in Well Street where it has been based since.

The conclusion/planning balace section of the report states: ‘The proposed development is acceptable in principle and complies with all but one of the relevant development plan policiesand is consistent with the provisions in the revised NPPF (National Planning Police Framework) specifically in relation to achieving sustainable development, achieving well-designed places, making effective use of land and conserving and enhancing the historic and natural environment.

‘The development does not comply with the Northamptonshire Parking Standards or policy 8(b) (ii) of the JCS as no off- road parking is provided.

‘However, material considerations set out in this report outweigh the policy conflict in this instance. The development will secure the re-use of a designated heritage asset.

‘It is recommended that the proposal be approved subject to conditions.’

The meeting is due to start at 7pm.