HMO plans for Rushden town centre building

If approved, the application says it will provide conveniently-located, low-cost housing to people employed in the town centre

By Stephanie Weaver
Friday, 26th February 2021, 7:00 am

A town centre building could be turned into a four-bedroom HMO (house of multiple occupancy) if plans are approved.

37, Church Street in Rushden is currently occupied by a company which produces podcasts and promotional videos.

However, plans have been submitted for change of use from a shop/offices to a four-bedroom HMO.

Plans have been submitted to turn 37, Church Street in Rushden into a four-bedroom HMO

Documents submitted to East Northants Council say the applicant already owns and operates other licensed HMOs in Coventry and Leamington Spa.

Church Street is mainly made up of commercial premises on the ground floors with living accommodation above.

It is also home to Rushden's Salvation Army hall and charity shop.

The design and access statement for the HMO states: "Unfortunately many of the businesses on Church Street are now closed and the premises are up for sale.

"This is part of a wider social and economic phenomenon which has seen this formerly thriving town centre fall into gradual decline."

It says 37, Church Street was originally designed and built as a dwellinghouse and was used as such for a long time until being converted to commercial use following an application in 1963.

And goes on to say: "It is considered that the current proposal would assist to support and revitalise the local economy and retail offering of the area by providing new residential occupants to the locality who would inevitably make use of local shops and facilities."

There is no parking with this site and the plans say it will be advertised as a 'car-free development.'

The design and access statement adds: "The HMO is specifically intended to provide conveniently-located, low-cost housing to people employed locally in the town centre, including retail workers and bar staff.

"As such, it is expected that occupants will mostly walk or cycle to their place of work."

A similar application for this site to change it to a five-bedroom HMO was refused in 2019.

For more information about this application, click here.

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