Posted: 19.11.20 at 13:05 by Tim Lethaby
An accountancy firm in Wells has applied to convert its offices into flats following the success of having staff work from home during the coronavirus crisis.
A planning application has been submitted to Mendip District Council for the change of use from office to residential and the conversion to four self-contained flats at Probusiness, St Lawrence Lodge, 37 Chamberlain Street, Wells, by Mr and Mrs Bowe.
In the application, Probusiness says its response to Covid-19 has caused a fundamental change from office-based work practices, which have been replaced by staff home-working.
Consequently, the building has been substantially unoccupied since March. According to the firm, home-based working practices have proven to work well, and are supported by the staff.
They will continue after Covid-19 measures have ceased, and so the building is surplus to current requirements.
Probusiness will continue to operate, and is planning to relocate to smaller premises in Wells to resume office-based work, but levels of occupancy will not be the same as previously, due to the preference for home-working.
St Lawrence Lodge, attached to 39 Chamberlain Street, was originally constructed as a single dwelling so the plans would see the building returned to its original use.
The plans are to have two flats on each of the floors, with three of them being one-bedroom homes and the final one having two bedrooms.
The application said: "The proposed development utilises an existing building, without need for major alterations or adaptations, and returns the building to its original residential use.
"There is space for car parking, private amenity and waste/recycling storage. The building makes a positive contribution to the Conservation Area, and this will remain unaltered."