New shops and flats plan for disused gym and theatre site
- Credit: Sarah Lucy brown
A disused former theatre and gym could be transformed into a new flats and shops in a bid to rejuvenate the heart of an East Suffolk village.
Developers FPC Rendlesham Limited proposal to build 11 affordable homes and three shop units on the former Angel Theatre and Jets Gym site in Rendlesham could bring 20 new full-time jobs into the village.
Those behind the development say it will "encourage residents to shop locally", with Rendlesham currently having just one shop - a recently refurbished Costcutter.
An application prepared by Paul Robinson Partnership said that "a national chain is lined up for the neighbourhood store" and that the affordable homes would include a mixture of two and three-bedroom properties, each with their own gardens.
It will revive a disused part of the village, with the buildings bought in 1997 as part of the old air base but later closing and falling into disrepair.
A number of plans have been proposed for the site over the years, including larger residential developments, but none ever started.
The old buildings were demolished in 2016 and have remained empty since.
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Sheppard Developments believes there is enough interest locally to support more business space in the village.
"The proposal will encourage residents to shop locally," notes the application prepared by Paul Robinson Partnership.
"The 11 proposed residential dwellings will provide affordable housing close to the village amenities in an area of the site otherwise undevelopable for commercial/community uses due to the presence of high voltage underground electric cables.
"It should be noted this is a deliverable opportunity which exists and should be encouraged to help provide a vibrant village centre."
Communal parking spaces will also be provided at the site.
Rendlesham Parish Council will host a meeting on Monday, November 11 for the public to discuss the proposed plans.
The meeting will be held at the village's community centre between 6.30pm and 7.30pm.