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Nine new homes could be built behind historic Norwich building

PUBLISHED: 11:18 03 December 2018 | UPDATED: 13:06 03 December 2018

Crystal House in Cattle Market Street, Norwich. Photo credit: Heist Films

Crystal House in Cattle Market Street, Norwich. Photo credit: Heist Films

Heist Films

A fresh bid has been lodged over the future use of Norwich’s Grade II-listed Crystal House - and to build nine homes behind the back of the historic building.

The Bullards team inside Crystal House on Cattle Market Street, including head brewer Hamish Cross, far left, John Bullard, third from left, and Russell Evans, centre. Picture: Heist Films.The Bullards team inside Crystal House on Cattle Market Street, including head brewer Hamish Cross, far left, John Bullard, third from left, and Russell Evans, centre. Picture: Heist Films.

Richard Pratt, the owner of the Cattle Market Street buildings - previously home to Warings Furniture - has submitted plans with Norwich City Council.

The proposals include the refurbishment of Crystal House itself, the demolition of the existing workshop buildings and the construction of a new five-storey building at the back.

That new development would include nine apartments, eight two-bedroom units and one one-bedroom unit, along with six car parking spaces.

There would also be cycle storage for 18 bikes, bin areas and extra warehouse space, which would be leased by the tenant of Crystal House.

The site already had planning permission for a five-storey residential building at the back, although that was for eight, rather than nine, new homes.

In documents lodged with City Hall, Qube Design Group state that the new scheme makes efforts to “reduce the formerly bulky massing and dominant appearance”.

They say: “By recessing and setting back each ascending floor the new building sits much better in its location, and with a lower ridge height than Crystal House it is not considered overly dominant.”

They say that the new homes will offer family housing in “a sustainable central Norwich location”.

A previous scheme had proposed splitting up Crystal House into shop units, with the first floor as a home.

But the proposals now is for it to remain as a single unit for one tenant.

That new tenant could be Norwich gin distillery Bullards. As previously reported, they want to move from their current home at the Ten Bells in St Benedicts Street to the Crystal House.

Bullards is hoping to house its new distillery there, as well as offerings tours and tastings. The company also has ambitions for a bar and ginstronomy restaurant, with food themed around, matched with and even made with gin.

The company has started a Crowdfunder at www.crowdfunder.co.uk/ginvest for which more than £20,000 has been pledged so far.

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