Former ‘health hazard’ hospital could be knocked down for housing
PUBLISHED: 10:53 09 November 2019 | UPDATED: 10:53 09 November 2019
Archant Norfolk Photographic © 2012
A former hospital could become housing as plans are submitted to knock down the “long-standing health hazard and eye-sore”.
Thetford Cottage Hospital, in Earls Street, has been empty for the last 13 years.
The Victorian building has been vandalised over the years with graffiti sprayed on the walls and abandoned equipment destroyed.
South Norfolk Developments has submitted documents to Breckland Council to transform the site into nine terraced houses with car parking. Included are 14 additional parking spaces for Grove Lane doctors surgery behind the site.
These homes would consist of a block of six houses which the plans said would match the existing homes in the street, with parking for nine cars outside.
A further block of three homes would be created at the north of the site in which the parking for the surgery would be situated.
Ian. H. Bix Associates, on behalf of South Norfolk Developments, said in the application that the aim is to "regenerate a prominent town centre site which had become both a long-standing health hazard, unauthorised drug use, and eye-sore that was detrimentally affecting the whole of Earls' Street".
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A heritage report by David Edleston said that the build will preserve surrounding listed buildings and that consideration has been made to fit with the characteristics of the area.
The demolishment of the building would make a "positive contribution" to the area, he adds.
Despite being situated next to listed properties the hospital site is not protected.
The hospital closed in 2006 following the opening of the £4.5m Thetford Community Healthy Living Centre, off Croxton Road.
A planning application had been sought to turn the hospital into flats but this was withdrawn in June this year.
Documents reveal that once developers Tang and Associates Ltd discovered that the site was not suitable to build flats on it sold the land on.
The hospital building has become a hot spot for vandalism with fires being started on the site in June 2016.
Fire fighters battled the blaze for three hours leaving residents calling for more to be done with the building.
South Norfolk Developments were contacted for comment.
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