Latest Wantage conversion plan recommended for approval

The Wantage in Castle Hill
The Wantage in Castle Hill
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The latest plans to convert the historic Kenilworth building the Wantage have been recommended for approval by council officers.

The Grade II-listed building in Castle Hill would be split into three apartments should the plans be approved by Warwick District Council’s planning committee on Tuesday September 13.

In their report, officers said the benefits of having two extra residences and securing the future of the Wantage outweighed the possible harm granting the plans might have on the building.

Although Kenilworth Town Council did not object to the plans, its members were not fully convinced, especially when it came to alterations to the front wall which Warwickshire County Council’s highways department has asked for.

In a statement, the town council said: “Whilst regretting the failure to retain the property as a single domestic dwelling house, we have no objection to the proposed separation into three units and in particular understands that the present proposal would not prevent conversion back to one house should that possibility arise.

“We are concerned that the requirements of the Highways Authority would result in drastic changes to the front wall and gateway which should be retained unaltered as a setting for this fine Grade II house.

“The town council would object if any such alteration to the wall were to be required.”

Historic England has objected to the plans, claiming the division of the house was unnecessary to secure the future of the building.

But despite the controversy surrounding previous plans to convert the Wantage, public reaction to these latest plans has largely been positive.

Kenilworth resident Alan Chambers said: “This is a detailed and well thought out design which answers all of the previous objections.

“We wholeheartedly support this application and would find it difficult to believe that all required boxes have not now been ticked.”