PLANS to convert vacant Chester offices next to Telford’s Warehouse into 27 serviced apartments for short and long-term stays have been approved.

The proposal to transform the collectively Grade II listed Diocesan House and Raymond House buildings on Raymond Street was given the green light by Cheshire West and Chester Council this week.

The redundant property has been vacant for around 15 years having previously been used as offices by British Waterways.

Back in 2015, planning permission was granted for student accommodation, comprising 18 bedrooms, but the scheme never got of the ground.

Both planning and listed building consent applications had been submitted by Liverpool-based Trophy Homes.

As part of the plans, they will also remove an existing external yard wall to form 15 car parking spaces.

Raymond House comprises two storeys with a basement level facing Raymond Street, while Diocesan House – once Church of England offices – is three storeys and faces the car park at the rear.

Chester and District Standard:

The vacant Raymond House.

The council's case officer Gail Nickson, who recommending approval in her planning report, states: "The applicant has confirmed that the use will be serviced accommodation which is also known as a service apartments or long stay apartments providing hotel-like amenities.

"The units will not be residential properties. The applicant has confirmed that short term would be one or two nights and long term would be 2-4 weeks.

"The units would not be individually registered with the Land Registry, would not have individual postal addresses and would not have individual metered services supplies.

"It is considered that the proposal will bring back into use this redundant building and the conversion can be undertaken in a way that is sympathetic to the building and the wider conservation area.

"There is sufficient parking provided to serve the site which is located within a sustainable location on the edge of the city centre. It is also considered that the proposal will not have an unacceptable detrimental effect on the occupiers of the neighbouring properties."

Chester and District Standard:

Diocesan House, left, next to Telford's Warehouse.

In the planning application submitted on behalf of the developer, it states: "The properties will be built for the short term rental sector, owned and maintained by Trophy Homes, who have a 25 year track record in the market in the North West of England.

"In creating an inclusive and sustainable environment with architectural merit our Client believes that this development will be a positive addition to the Garden Quarter area.

"This project proposes to create a greater choice of temporary accommodation and deliver modern standards to visiting residents."