Wednesday, May 5, 2021

News: Residential plans for more historic Rotherham buildings


Two more heritage buildings in Rotherham town centre could be converted into housing, if recently submitted plans are approved.

Separate proposals are coming forward for a former townhouse and a part of the old Post Office.

On Domine Lane, consent is being sought to create five apartments in the Loading Bay / Post office building. Previously The Exchange, and formerly Yates Wine Lodge, is where Mark Mcgrail, owner of SME Environmental Holdings, saved the vacant building and created the 1915 Bar & Bistro in 2016.

Last year, the COVID-19 virus caused the current operators to call time on the popular food hall which was created within the 1915 Bar.

The latest plans for the building, which is not listed but is within the conservation area, are from SME and involve alterations including the erection of dividing partition walls to create three, 1 bed loft style apartments and two 2 bed live/work apartments. A commercial unit is set to be created to the existing courtyard fronting Domine Lane.

The Post Office building which backs onto the Loading Bay was originally constructed in 1907 and has already been converted into apartments by the same team at the upper levels. Artists' workshops can be found at the basement level.

Most alterations will be internal but some changes to the exterior, such as new roof lights and glazing, are proposed.

Connected to the Main Street conversion, a laundrette and cycle store is also proposed which is thought could also house a small coffee/meeting area.

The plans, drawn up by Just Architecture, state: "With some careful design decisions the building has been changed to make interesting interior spaces creating city centre living areas which will be attractive to young professionals many of which now have an increased focus on working from home.

"The inclusion of a relatively small commercial extension will help to provide a number of opportunities for local business with the benefit of immediate footfall and the customer base from this new community area that is being developed.

"The adaptation of the existing building, which has struggled to survive over its recent iterations, will help to form a more cohesive community in keeping with the council's recent vision and Master Plan for the town centre."

The town centre masterplan made clear that retail is not the answer as the focus shifts to other town centre uses such as leisure and housing.

On Bridgegate, plans have been submitted to convert empty retail premises into six flats.

The former Walmsley furniture store, which was most recently a Poundstretcher, was bought prior to going to auction with Pugh Auctions at the end of 2020 with a guide price of £110,000.

The proposal from applicant Wasim Parvencz involves converting the first floor and second floor to six flats. A new entrance door to the flats is planned to be on the left side of the building altering the shop front. The ground floor looks set to remain as one large unit.

The building is Grade II listed having been built in the mid 18th century as a townhouse.

Also proposed is the replacement of all existing single glazed windows to the first and second floor to be replaced with double glazed sashes units matching the design of the existing windows.

Images: Google Maps / Pugh Auctions


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