Plan to convert Worksop Magistrates' Court into flats is set for approval

The former magistrates’ court in Worksop could be turned into flats after councillors were recommended to approve major plans.

Monday, 8th November 2021, 7:25 pm

Worksop Magistrates’ Court, in Potter Street, last heard a court case in 2014 and has remained vacant since.

It was closed as part of a nationwide programme, with Bassetlaw cases transferred to Mansfield Magistrates’ Court for hearings.

But developers are planning to bring the site back into use, converting the former court into 26 apartments.

Developers Edward Hall, left, and Arran Bailey outside the former Worksop Magistrate’s Court building.

The plans will go before Bassetlaw District Council’s planning committee on Wednesday November 10, with council officers recommending the plans should go ahead.

Documents published ahead of the meeting state the 26 apartments will be spread across the two existing floors of the former court.

If approved, it would see 18 one-bedroom flats and a further six two-bedroom homes created inside the building.

The apartments will be spread evenly across the two floors, while there will be a hard-surface courtyard to the rear of the building for residents’ amenities.

There are no proposals to create a car park for the residents, with Nottinghamshire County Council, the highways authority, “content with this approach”.

This is because the applicant is proposing cycle storage for the future occupiers, a proposal “welcomed” by the authority.

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In its recommendations to councillors, Bassetlaw officers state bringing the building back into use will “improve the area”.

The documents state: “Bringing a historic building back into use… is given significant positive weight.

“This building is within a range of buildings that contributes positively to the character and appearance of the [Worksop] conservation area, and its reuse is welcomed.

“The proposal sees little external alterations which again is welcomed.

“The proposal will bring a historic building back into use which, in turn, will improve the area in terms of vitality and visual amenity.”

The building was sold to property developer ALB Group in February this year, with the company confirming at the time its plans to create the apartments.

The sale came as part of a wider sell-off of former courts across the country, leading to the Ministry of Justice selling about one-third of its portfolio.

Commenting in February, Arran Bailey, managing director of ALB Group, said: “The building sits just a few yards from Bridge Street’s colourful shopping thoroughfare, so it’s particularly well placed for cafes and restaurants on the doorstep, as well as easy access to the town’s train station.”

If plans are approved on Wednesday, the applicant must provide £9,815 in section 106 developer contributions to support play facilities in The Canch.