Conversion of former bank into 23-bed HMO approved, Littlehampton

We secured planning consent at planning committee yesterday for the extension and refurbishment of a prominent, locally-listed building on Littlehampton’s high street.

The former Barclays bank closed in early 2021 and since then we’ve been advising property developer, Target Five, on the planning prospects for its redevelopment.

The brownfield site is at the heart of the town centre, making it a highly sustainable location and perfect for intensification to boost the economic growth of the town.

The unanimously approved scheme combines careful refurbishment with a large new build element on the northern side of the site. It will deliver a 23-bed house in multiple occupation (HMO): each bedroom will be ensuite and the scheme will also provide shared kitchen facilities, additional utility and bathroom facilities, a communal roof terrace and 42 cycle spaces. On the ground floor, we incorporated four commercial units to maintain an active frontage and attract new investment into the town.

We are investigating the potential of CLT (cross-laminated timber) and other modern methods of construction, alongside lime-based renders, to make this a highly sustainable build. The scheme incorporates a large solar PV array on the roof. Heating will be provided either from MVHR or air source heat pumps.

HMOs can be contentious and this scheme received its fair share of opposition from locals, and this site had the added context of being within the setting of three Grade II listed buildings and on the edge of a conservation area. However, we worked positively and proactively with the planning department to address matters raised through the consultation and we’re really pleased with the outcome, and the final scheme.

We’ll now be progressing the technical drawings needed for the contractor and building control, with work expected to start on site later this year.