Ipswich: Former Rose and Crown pub to become Kurdish community centre

The Rose and Crown on the junction of Norwich Road and Bramford Road in Ipswich.

The Rose and Crown on the junction of Norwich Road and Bramford Road in Ipswich.

Ipswich Borough Council is set to approve a permanent change of use which will see a former pub become a Kurdish community centre.

Temporary planning permission was granted two years ago for the Rose and Crown pub on the Norwich Road to be used as a community centre, including prayer room.

The change of use is for the ground floor and ancillary office space.

Now officers in Ipswich Borough Council’s planning department have recommended that the change be made permanent.

Councillors will decide whether or not to approve the recommendation at a meeting of the council’s Planning and Development Control Committee on December 4; it is expected the plans will go ahead.

In a report written about the application, planners highlighted concerns about community tensions.

The report states that no noise impact would result from the ‘Call to Prayer’ on a Friday as it is “usually electronic”.

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The report adds: “If it were to result in an actual call to prayer from the premises, this would have to be likened to the use of church bells on a Sunday morning.

“Given that the ‘Call to Prayer’ would be around lunchtime on a Friday this would not be an unacceptable noise nuisance. Notwithstanding this, the use of an electronic call will be encouraged.”

The report also said that the Borough’s community services had been contacted regarding the application.

“Anecdotally stories of previous on-street tensions between different cultures and communities in the Norwich Road area have been brought to Officer’s attention,” it said.

“However, there is on-going work in the community designed to ensure that there is not a repeat of these tensions. Having a community centre for the Kurdish Community would help give them a sense of belonging and a sense of space.”