Prominent Chesterfield town centre building could be transformed into shop and flats
Plans have been submitted to transform a prominent and currently empty building in Chesterfield town centre into a new shop and flats.
Developers want to convert the vacant first, second and third floors of the building at the junction of High Street and Packers Row, which was built in the 1890s and most recently used as a bakery.
The Tamcourt Group has applied to Chesterfield Borough Council for planning permission to create eight separate dwellings, including one-bedroom studios, one and two-bedroom apartments and a third-floor extension on the existing flat roof section of the building to allow space for two one-bedroom apartments.
The ground floor of the Tudor-style building will remain as an active shop – although developers say it could be split into two smaller units.
Architects JLK say in planning documents: “The building is a high gabled Tudor-style with original ornate detailing to the north and east elevations, which are the prominent elevations and look out onto the main pedestrian streets.”
Councillor Kate Sarvent, Chesterfield Borough Council cabinet member for town centres and visitor economy, said she had no major objection to the plans but raised concern that three of the studios were too small and below the minimum size usually recommended.
Chesterfield and District Civic Society also gave its backing to the proposal.
Society chairman Philip Riden said: “We strongly support the proposal to restore the ground floor of the building to retail use, and the creation of studio and one-bedroom flats above.
"This will increase the supply of reasonably priced accommodation in the town centre and bring another building back into residential use, a policy which we consider highly desirable.”
The site formed part of the Shambles development of the late 12th Century, built when the present market place was laid out.
"Packers Row formed the eastern boundary of the Shambles and High Street the northern boundary,” Mr Riden said.
“Given the repeated redevelopment of the site, there is no reason to believe that any archaeological evidence of medieval buildings survives and no need for an archaeological assessment.
"The present building was built for E. Woodhead & Sons Ltd, who were for many years Chesterfield’s leading ‘high class grocer’.”