Decision due on hardware shop site

DEVELOPERS hoping to transform the site of a much-loved Ipswich hardware shop are likely to get the go ahead this week. An application by Winston Estates Ltd to turn the empty Martin and Newby site in Fore street and Orwell Place into 21 flats and five smaller shops will come before council planners on Wednesday.

DEVELOPERS hoping to transform the site of a much-loved Ipswich hardware shop are likely to get the go ahead this week.

An application by Winston Estates Ltd to turn the empty Martin and Newby site in Fore street and Orwell Place into 21 flats and five smaller shops will come before council planners on Wednesday. Council officials are expected to recommend to Ipswich Borough Council's planning and development committee that they should grant planning permission for the scheme.

The proposal includes the demolition of rear outbuildings and replaces them with a three-storey apartment block.

The developers are hoping to divide the glass-fronted shop buildings into ground floor shops and upper floor apartments.

Martin and Newby closed in June this year after trading in the town for 131 years.

A background report prepared for councillors into the proposal said the character of the listed buildings would be kept by the development.

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It said: "The closure of Martin and Newby prompted concern about the possible loss of retail use from this important site.

"It is encouraging to see this proposal which can add to the 'speciality' shopping in the area."

n. What do you think of the proposals? Write to Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk