Flats and shop outlet to replace former Motorworld store in Newtown

By Keri Trigg

NEWTOWN’s former Motorworld store will be torn down and replaced with a new shop and flats, after plans were approved.

The decision to grant planning permission comes after earlier proposals for the site were rejected amid concerns over the height of the building and the impact it would have on the town’s conservation area and nearby listed buildings.

At a meeting today, Powys County Council’s planning committee commended the applicant for working with conservation officers to address the concerns and scale back the plans accordingly.

The approved scheme will see a ground floor shop with four flats above, along with a roof terrace.

Neighbour Teresa Davies spoke at the meeting, saying she and other nearby residents were worried about overlooking, loss of light and the impact on their historic properties.

A report to the committee said 50 people had lodged objections to the plans, along with nine letters of support.

Geraint Jones, agent for the applicant, Nigel Bryant of Surrey-based firm Manip Ltd, also addressed the committee.

He said his client had taken conservation officers’ advice on board and the proposed building was now just nine feet taller than the current one.

Mr Jones added that the scheme would provide “modern retail space” and “four high quality flats”.

Councillor Adrian Jones proposed approving the application, saying: “The main concern was the built heritage officer’s concern about the height. That’s now been appeased and he is happy with it.”

The proposal was seconded by Councillor Heulwen Hulme, who said the flats were “much needed”.

Councillor Angela Davies added: “I applaud the applicant for working with the council and making the adaptations that were requested to the plan.”

The committee voted to grant permission, with eight votes for and one abstention.

The earlier application, rejected by the committee in March, was 2.2 metres taller and contained six flats above the retail space.

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