New plan to convert former Rushden clinic into flats

Rushden Memorial Clinic, pictured in 2009
Rushden Memorial Clinic, pictured in 2009

A new bid to convert a historic building in Rushden into flats has been submitted by developers.

The Memorial Clinic in Hayway originally opened in January 1950 before it was replaced by the Nene Park Outpatients Clinic, in Irthlingborough, in 2011.

It is currently the subject of a planning appeal after East Northants Council failed to come to a decision over a plan to convert and extend the existing building to create 12 one and two-bedroom flats.

But separately to the appeal a new planning application has been submitted to the council.

It proposes the conversion and extension of the existing memorial clinic to create 14 one and two-bedroom flats for over-55s, with secure amenity space, communal living areas and associated parking.

The application has already received a number of objections online.

One resident wrote: “The clinic is an attractive building and an integral part of historic Rushden.

“Any conversion should be sympathetic to the external facade. It would be desirable to limit the accommodation to four to six flats to retain the aesthetics of the area.

“As larger properties with this type of architectural appeal are no longer being built we should certainly preserve those that are stlll standing and can be of potential use to the community.”

Another objection said: “The clinic has a long history, first as a family home then as a memorial clinic purchased by the people of Rushden to provide local medical care for returning WWII soldiers and then serving the local population.

“It is a treasured landmark locally and hence the reason why there is such strong local opposition to the proposed plans for development.

“I have no objection to developing the property, indeed I would actively encourage it as it is gradually deteriorating.

“However, the proposed 14 flats, two more than the previous application, are far too many and are architecturally poor in design with flat roofs on either side and crowded in behind the main building with little space for parking and leisure.”

The application will be decided by East Northants Council’s planning committee at a date yet to be decided.