Successful change of use for a Grade II listed pub to residential in Chelmsford

We have obtained planning approval for a change of use from a Grade II listed public house (A4 use class) to a 4-bed residential dwelling (C3 use class) in Chelmsford, Essex.

The scheme:

The proposed development sought to change the use and convert the Grade II listed building to a dwellinghouse.

There were a number of complex land designations associated with the site including;

  • its location outside the settlement boundary;
  • and within the Metropolitan Green Belt.

Furthermore, there were restrictions which prevented the change of use of listed buildings unless in the interests of the long-term preservation of the building and its setting.  Local policy also required extensive criteria to be met to allow change of use of premises that provide facilities or services which support the local community.

Making the case for a change of use:

The pub had run at a loss for a number of years despite an experienced management team and positive reviews. We set about compiling viability evidence to support the planning application for a change of use.

As part of our planning statement we were able to provide satisfactory evidence show that:

  • every reasonable effort had been made to secure a suitable business re-use;  
  • the pub was not used or valued as a local facility and similar accessible facilities were nearby;
  • the pub was not economically viable due to difficult contextual and demographic circumstances and a challenging market environment;
  • returning the building to its historical residential use would help to
    ensure its future upkeep;
  • The proposed change of use represented the most suitable and viable use and would provide a beneficial contribution to the local housing stock;
  • reverting the listed property back to a residential dwelling would require minimal alterations, and complement the rural green belt setting.

Thorough analyses of the history of the pub ownership, its setting, context, other similar facilities, use by local residents and the complexity of the land designations meant we were successful in meeting the criteria for local policy and the application was approved without delay by Chelmsford Borough Council

About us:

Plainview Planning are experienced in pub change of use applications, providing planning support on a retainer basis for a national chain. Planning for pubs can be an emotive topic and we are adept at negotiating the planning process for these types of applications.  You can read more about our work in this sector here.