Developer unveils bid to convert town centre offices into flats

Plans have been submitted to turn the 18th century Wykeham House, in Huntingdon, into flats

Plans have been submitted to turn the 18th century Wykeham House, in Huntingdon, into flats - Credit: Archant

A period property in the heart of Huntingdon could be given a new lease of life under plans to turn the building into seven flats.

Lodged by St Neots developer Constant Properties Investments, the application proposes to transform Wykeham House, in Market Square, from offices into six one-bedroom flats and one two-bedroom flat.

The Grade II-listed building was used as offices until early last year when it was put on the market and has since remained empty.

In submitted plans, Constant Properties Investments noted: “The proposal to change the use of the build-ing from offices to residential results from the difficulty in letting the offices; which have been vacant and on the market for more than 12 months; despite the office market having been fairly buoyant.

“There is a clear difficulty in letting office space in town centres, particularly where there is no onsite parking provision; as is the case here.”

Within the application, the developer has proposed that the internal layout of the building be changed by removing walls, as well as removing a 20th century chimney to make room for a new staircase.

The developer has stated, however, that any work to the building “should be seen to preserve its special interest”, given its location in the heart of Huntingdon’s conservation area.

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“It is therefore the proposed alterations and works to the listed building and the impact of those works on the significance of the building and conservation area that are the main issues to be considered,” the plans added.

The 18th century building is currently being marketed by Barford+Co which suggested that it could have the potential for a range of uses outside of residential, including a café, bar or restaurant, due to its town centre location.

Members of Huntingdon Town Council’s planning applications panel will have their say on the proposal at a meeting on Thursday.