Plans go in for shops and flats in place of Kettering town centre eyesore

The proposed Newland Street development.
The proposed Newland Street development.

A Kettering councillor says plans to regenerate a town centre eyesore into shops and flats are great for the town’s future.

An application was submitted earlier this month by Playnest Ltd to demolish the existing units at 11-12 Newland Street and build two shops and 32 flats.

The site, between Wilko and Gerald S. White Furniture Shop Ltd, has been derelict and run down for a number of years.

It made headlines in 2014 when council bosses put up murals on its windows in an attempt to make the site more attractive.

And now Cllr Michael Brown (Con, Brambleside) says he hopes the plans will be passed to give the town a facelift.

He said: “It’s really promising that private investment is showing interest in that part of the town.

“Obviously it’s subject to a planning application that I won’t be part of, but it’s good news.

“It’s not an attractive area for businesses at all in its current state, it’s a bit of an eyesore.

“I’ve no idea what the two stores will be but hopefully it will give the site a long overdue facelift.

“I hope the plans are passed.”

If approved, the site would be home to 10 one-bedroom flats and 22 two-bedroom flats.

They would go some way to helping the council achieve its target of having a total of 1,000 dwellings in the town centre by 2021.

Cllr Brown added: “It’s part of our welfare reform that we need to try to build all of these houses.

“If we can build on these brownfield sites in the town then that will reduce the need to build on greenfield sites in the countryside and on the outskirts of the town.

“It will also see more people coming to the town which would be great for its future.

“Some people have their concerns but the majority of the people I’ve spoken have given a positive reaction to these plans.”

A decision on the plans is expected by April 11.