Decision will determine fate of Norwich’s Ferry Boat Inn

The Ferry Boat, King Street, Norwich. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The Ferry Boat, King Street, Norwich. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

A decision over the fate of a boarded-up riverside pub will be made this week - with developers hoping a revised attempt to turn it into flats gets approved.

The Ferry Boat Inn, in Norwich's King Street, used to be one of the city's key rock music venue, but it has been empty since 2006.

A previous bid to transform it into a backpackers' hostel was abandoned.

And members of Norwich City Council's planning committee last year rejected a bid to build apartments there, stating plans were not sensitive to the conservation area.

Developers came back with a scaled back application, hoping that would allay concerns.

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City councillors will decide on Thursday whether to grant Ferry Boat Developments Ltd permission for the redevelopment.

It would involve partial demolition of some of the buildings on the site, but not the former pub itself, which is a grade II listed building.

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The original application proposed 43 apartments and a seven-storey tower; this has been reduced to 41 dwellings and a five-storey tower.

The new design has found favour with civic watchdog the Norwich Society and Historic England, which both raised concerns about the previous application.

But the Broads Authority still has concerns over the scale, fearing it will 'add to the canalisation of this section of river'.

And the Cannon Wharf Residents Association, which represents nearby Cannon Wharf and Spooners Wharf, has objected, with concerns about privacy and anti-social behaviour.

But, in the report which will come before the committee, planning officer Tracy Armitage is recommending officers approve the scheme.

She said: 'It is considered that the revised scheme is of an appropriate design for the location; delivers housing in a highly sustainable location and secures the regeneration of a building and site which have now been vacant for a substantial number of years.'

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