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Newark and Sherwood District Council planning committee to make decision on conversion of council house to Boughton Community hub

Plans to convert a council house into to a new community centre have been recommended for approval.

The project would involve the change of use of a three bedroom end-terrace council property on Manvers View, Boughton, into a community centre, with associated alterations.

Newark and Sherwood District Council’s planning committee will consider the application, made by the council in November 2023, at its meeting on February 15.

34 Manvers Road, Boughton, which is planned to be converted to a community hub. Credit: Google Maps
34 Manvers Road, Boughton, which is planned to be converted to a community hub. Credit: Google Maps

It aims to create a hub focussed on wellbeing and crime reduction within a deprived community within the Retford Road Estate, classed as a highly deprived area.

The property currently has a living room, dining room, bathroom, hall and kitchen downstairs and three bedrooms, a bathroom and landing upstairs.

Documents submitted with the planning application state: “According to the income deprivation scale (2019) Boughton LSOA is among the 10% most deprived neighbourhoods in the country.

“In terms of deprivation that affects children, the area is among the 5%.”

The community centre would become a base for initiatives to grow and somewhere for residents to meet with other agencies – including the police, community safety teams, housing services, waste management, the NHS, Credit Union, CVS, Citizens Advice and Inspire.

The council says it aims to improve the health and wellbeing of residents, reduce crime and anti-social behaviour, increase feelings of safety, and create a vibrant and self-sufficient community where residents look out for each other and actively contribute to their area.

It will also provide a hub for educational activities such as digital and online training.

Internally, the plans propose a large meeting space downstairs, where the living and dining rooms are located, and will retain a kitchen and toilet — although this will be converted to be an accessible facility.

A wheelchair ramp is also be instated at the entry.

Upstairs the three bedrooms are to be converted into a smaller library and meeting room, housing and police hub, and partnership room, with the existing bathroom retained.

The hub is expected to operate between 9am and 9pm on weekdays, although is expected to mostly operate between 9am and 5pm, with evening meetings or events on an ad hoc basis.

On Saturday its opening hours will be 9am to 6pm, and on Sunday 9am to 4pm.

The application states: “The purpose of the hub will be to bring together tenants and residents in one place to provide one voice to encourage them to become involved in improvements locally. It is not envisaged that there will be significant meetings over the week outside of the 9-5pm time slot, and all meetings will be conducted in a respectful manner taking into account, noise levels and the close proximity to neighbours.”

Residents have also been promised that parking in the area will not be affected, with a number of bays already available nearby.

A second application, for advertisement consent for external signage at the site, will also be considered by the committee.

It outlines a number of blue and white signs which read ‘Boughton Community Hub. Working with the community, for the community’ to be displayed to the front and side of the property.

The plans have been supported by Ollerton and Boughton Town Council.

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