Norwich cafe and furniture shop on the move as homes plan is approved

Graham Waring. Photo by Simon Finlay Graham Waring. Photo by Simon Finlay

Mark Shields mark.shields@archant.co.uk
Friday, April 4, 2014
10:03 AM

Plans for a Norwich café and furniture shop to be turned into flats have been given the go-ahead.

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Workshops at the back of Grade II-listed Crystal House on Cattle Market Street, currently home to Warings furniture shop and cafe, will be converted into eight flats under the plans.

The front of the building will be split into two shop units at street level, with a central lobby area leading to a two-bedroom flat on the first floor and four two-bedroom and three three-bedroom properties at the rear.

Councillors voted by a majority to approve the plans at a meeting of Norwich City Council’s planning committee yesterday.

Graham Waring, joint managing director of Warings, said the company said it had known of the owner’s intention since moving in nearly three years ago, and would be looking for new premises.

“It won’t work for us here. There’s not enough space for a furniture shop and cafe and we need both to make it work,” he said. “We would like to go elsewhere, though we don’t know how long it may be before work begins.”

An internal car park with one space per flat would also be built, although there would be no additional parking for the shop units. Councillors expressed concerns at the changes to the front of the building, which was originally built as a foundry, workshop and showroom for the farm machinery company Holmes and Sons, and in particular the upper windows being obscured by blinds or curtains.

But planners said folding doors would be fitted inside that flat, to create an indoor conservatory and maintain the building’s historic facade, and agreed to impose a condition preventing any coverings being put up by tenants.

The committee heard an objection from Jeremy O’Rourke of LSI Architects next door, who said the new flats would overlook the firm’s offices, and could affect their own future expansion plans.

Officers said the building’s height, the subject of others’ concerns, would not go above the ridge of the current building, and upper floors would be recessed so as not to overlook nearby homes.

What do you think of the plans? Write, with your full details, to Letters editor, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich, NR1 1RE.

11 comments

  • A lovely looking building - but it shouldn't be residential. I certainly wouldn't want to live there. Agree with PDH - St. Anne's Wharf should be a priority for housing.

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    MattW

    Friday, April 4, 2014

  • Now this really IS news. A planning application accepted in Norfolk! Some actual progress might actually take place at this rate! Better slow down and call another pointless committee, waste a bit more time and money.

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    Steady On

    Friday, April 4, 2014

  • So these people are moving into a building right next to a live music venue? along with staring straight into the castle mall? I see complaints coming by the bucket load with this idea.

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    harri stebbing

    Friday, April 4, 2014

  • I think the Glass House should be left as it stands , Its an attractive building with so much potential, This cities Mania to build rabbit hutch developments with every opportunity it gets is spoiling this cities heritage and appearance . Surely Anglia Sq is a priority for immediate development and built with a sensitive approach in keeping with the surrounding buildings. Its currently a horrendous blight on the landscape which should never have been built. There are a host of proposed developments due for this city which seem to either vanish into oblivion or take forever to come to fruition. Too many planning mistakes have been made in the past through rushed developments or lack of imagination, Lets not repeat the same mistakes.

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    wickobi

    Friday, April 4, 2014

  • It's lovely to see plans that take into consideration existing residents and business in the vacinity, oh.. wait.

    Report this comment

    lawrence

    Friday, April 4, 2014

  • Also why does that actual planning page still say decision pending? Im pretty sure protocol requires parties are informed before the papers when a decision is made

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    WolvesInWolves

    Friday, April 4, 2014

  • I am not sure if this is the best location for multiple flatsapartments. Presumably the residents would have to park in the warehouse style building adjacent to the Marquee. As there is a large number of pedestrians who use this pedestrianised pathway between King Street and Cattle Market StreetRose Lane and as the residents would have to join traffic on a one way system that is always queuing I can foresee difficulties. I would also advise the builders to use extra sound proofing so the residents can sleep at night. I find it strange how easy it is to move a property and a district from commercial to residential usage. I would also have thought the councils priority should have been in getting St Anne's Wharf sorted like they promised to a very long time ago.

    Report this comment

    PDH

    Friday, April 4, 2014

  • Also why does that actual planning page still say decision pending? Im pretty sure protocol requires parties are informed before the papers when a decision is made

    Report this comment

    WolvesInWolves

    Friday, April 4, 2014

  • Would be a nice compromise if they could restore and protect the exterior as false frontage for the flats to be built behind it, thus protecting the look and feel of the exterior whilst constructing utterly modern housing within it .... plus it will act as a noise barrier to the new residents ... just a suggestion

    Report this comment

    Lucioperca

    Friday, April 4, 2014

  • Also why does that actual planning page still say decision pending? Im pretty sure protocol requires parties are informed before the papers when a decision is made

    Report this comment

    WolvesInWolves

    Friday, April 4, 2014

  • I think it would be a shame if there were substantial changes to this landmark building. The dreadful Castle Mall project cut off this part of the market place, which was a lovely urban landscape, from the rest of the Castle environs and surrounding streets. The least blessed Norwich planners can do is to save the buildings there. The areaa round the former Look East buildings and John Lewis is also wrecked , with the few remaining Georgian buildings needing protection. The character of Norwich is nibbled away, one small building at a time , by planners who have no feel for what makes or made the city special.

    Report this comment

    Daisy Roots

    Friday, April 4, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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