Plan to turn central Harrogate offices into flats
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Last updated Apr 1, 2024
Photo of 5 Cambridge Road in Harrogate, where the offices on the first, second and third floors are subject to a planning application for conversion into three flats.
5 Cambridge Road in Harrogate.

A new planning application in Harrogate has further highlighted the trend towards town centre living. 

An applicant named as Govind wants to turn the offices on the first, second and third floors of 5 Cambridge Road into three flats.

Each apartment will take up a whole floor and have two double bedrooms – one of them with en suite shower room – as well as an open-plan kitchen, living room and dining area. 

The property stands between William Hill and the Cambridge Café, opposite The Den. 

Changing the use of town centre properties from class E – the term used by planners to denote commercial, business and service usage – to C3, residential, has become increasingly common in recent years.

In 2021, the government introduced a new permitted development right  to allow changes from E to C3 without planning permission in most cases.

The aim was to reverse the decline of town and city centres that have experienced an exodus of retailers and company offices in the wake of covid. The increase in online shopping has led to falling footfall on shopping streets and the trend for home-working has resulted in less demand for office space.

The decision on this latest application, which is being handled by agent Elite Dwellings Ltd, will determine whether the conversion falls under the permitted development rules or whether the applicant needs to give prior notification of development.

The consultation period on the application will run until Monday, April 8, and council planning officers aim to make a decision on the case by Friday, May 3. 


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