Plans lodged for conversion of former Berwick department store

Plans have been lodged for the conversion of a former department store and post office in Berwick.
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Local builder Michael Richardson wants to revamp the ‘outmoded’ commercial premises on West Street to create new flats.

The ground floor was occupied by the Post Office from 2003 to 2015 but the first and second floors of what was Dalgleish’s department store have been largely unused since 2003.

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A planning report by Alan Bain of Camerons Strachan Yuill Architects – which plans to retain its studio office in the repurposed ground floor – states: ‘The proposal is for the conversion/change of use of the existing outmoded commercial premises to create new domestic flats which incorporates a small stairwell extension through the existing first floor flat roof.

Conversion plans have been submitted for a property on West Street, Berwick.Conversion plans have been submitted for a property on West Street, Berwick.
Conversion plans have been submitted for a property on West Street, Berwick.

‘The scheme also seeks to replace the majority of the timber sash & case windows and timber casement windows due to their frames being rotten and past the stage of repair.’

It is proposed that the large commercial floor space on the upper floors is split into four two-bed flats with an additional one-bed flat on the ground floor.

A new office space would be created on the ground floor, accessed through the existing recessed door. A new entrance door would be installed next to it, leading to the proposed new flats.

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The only external amendment to the property is a small rendered timber framed stairwell extension at the rear of the property, built off the existing flat roof.

No car parking is provided with this proposed development, with the applicant stating that both on street and off street parking is available elsewhere within the town centre.

The report continues: ‘The proposal makes an efficient use of the redundant office and commercial space, with minimum impact on adjoining occupiers and businesses.

‘The overall floor area of the existing offices spaces is being fully used and maximised in such a way to offer five new flats within the town centre of Berwick.

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‘The proposal has no adverse effect on the Berwick Conservation Area.

‘The proposal is in a location with high level public transport access and ideally suited to provide economical accommodation in a very sustainable manner.’

A final decision will be made by Northumberland County Council.