An exciting new change of use has been granted for a historic building in Twyford Town Centre which will see a vacant property brought back to life and transformed into a dental surgery.
The two-storey building has been vacant since 2015 and marketing evidence has shown that there has been little interest from main town centre uses to take over the property. However, this new change of use will allow the building to be connected to a neighbouring building and allow a throughflow to and from the existing dental surgery next door.
Although very little will change to the exterior of the building due to it’s heritage nature, the inside will see development works take place to introduce a reception and waiting area on the ground floor and office space, a staff restroom and surgery rooms on the first-floor level. ET Planning worked with Martin Butler Partnerships on the architectural plans for this site.
Upon submitting this Change of Use proposal to Wokingham Borough Council, ET Planning highlighted a number of key points to ensure the proposal was agreed.
The first of these were to demonstrate that the reuse of a vacant building in a prime location would create additional local jobs in the area. ET Planning also noted that should the change of use not be permitted the existing dental surgery next door would need to relocate due to their expansion plans; resulting in loss of employment and two vacant buildings.
ET Planning Officers also sort evidence from a local estate agent who had been managing the property. The marketing evidence that they were able to provide supported the introduction of a change of use to Class D1. The estate agent had found that there had been little interest from main town centre uses over the last two years due to lack of parking and loading space. Therefore, in order to bring a town centre building back to life, a change of use was needed.
Finally, due to the site being located within a conservation area, ET Planning obtained support from a Heritage consultant who stated: “the proposed alterations to the properties are small scale, use traditional materials and are simple in nature. They have hugely positive impact of bringing a vacant building on a prominent site back into use also retaining shop frontage.”
After putting forward a strong case for a change of use which would benefit the local area and bring a vacant building back into use, the proposal was agreed via a delegated decision.