Bid to transform Ferry Boat Inn in Norwich fails

The Ferry Boat Inn on King Street in Norwich has been boarded up since it closed in 2006.

The Ferry Boat Inn on King Street in Norwich has been boarded up since it closed in 2006. - Credit: © ARCHANT NORFOLK PHOTOGRAPHI

A bid to breath life into the derelict Ferry Boat Inn in Norwich has dramatically failed.

The Grade II-listed pub on the banks of the Wensum was once the city's hotspot for rock music until it closed in 2006 and has now stood vacant for nearly 10 years.

Yesterday plans to transform the building into 43 apartments were rejected by Norwich City Council.

Developers paid more than £500,000 for the site and proposed five buildings with basement car parks, including a seven-storey tower and riverside landscaping.

However in a heated debate councillors argued that the effect on conservation, potential flood risks, lack of affordable housing and out of character design had no place in the developing area on King Street.

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Simeon Jackson, green councillor for Mancroft, said: 'Even if it was 100pc affordable housing I wouldn't want to approve it as it's damaging to the heritage area. When you look at other landmarks you can quite easily define them; the only way you could describe this one is the carbuncle on the corner.

'It's not sensitive to the conservation area and developers need to go away and do a complete redesign.'

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The seven-storey tower also received criticism from both Historic England and the Norwich Society who said the planned building was too high and would cause harm to the conservation area.

Four councillors voted against the developers' proposal, three voted in support and four abstained, leaving the developers to return to the drawing board.

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