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North Creake post office and forge to be turned into home after West Norfolk Council grants planning permission

A “particularly special” post office and forge with “historic significance” are set to be transformed into a home.

Yesterday, West Norfolk Council granted planning permission for the building on Church Street in North Creake to be converted.

Mr J Constable had submitted the proposals in November last year, aiming to turn it into a single dwelling with an extension and alterations.

The former post office and forge in North Creake. Picture: Google Maps
The former post office and forge in North Creake. Picture: Google Maps

Planning documents say that the building, known as the Post Office, Forge And Smithy, is “clearly of some age” and that it is therefore reasonable to assume that parts of it date from original structure.

A report from the borough council’s planning officers said: “Forge buildings would have once been a common sight in most villages and towns, and so the original use of this building is completely right for the age of the property and would have been an important local service to the village and surrounding farms.

“Obviously, these buildings are now very rare. This forge is particularly special because its appearance is largely unchanged and it still contains some of the historic forge and blacksmith equipment.

“It is an important building which helps to tell the story of the history of the village and has some historic significance and is therefore identified as a non designated heritage asset.”

The plans which were eventually approved by the council had been altered following objections from North Creake Parish Council to wooden cladding being used as part of the scheme.

Conservation officers decided that the amended scheme is “more appropriate to the historic use of this important village building”.

The existing single-storey forge building will be retained and re-roofed under the plans, with a curved extension proposed to the rear.

The development also includes the creation of a first floor providing three bedrooms.

Some original ideas, such as for a first-floor balcony, were abandoned in order to “cause the least harm to the significance of the building”.

“The amended plans are therefore now considered to respect the character and appearance of the Conservation Area as well as the building itself as a non-designated heritage asset,” officers’ report added.

The plans were approved subject to a number of conditions, including some focusing on ensuring visibility for drivers leaving the property is maintained at all times.

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