AN iconic Milford building is set to be remodelled and extended to create three self-contained flats above a cafe and restaurant.
An application from Richard Thompson has been agreed by New Forest District Council to alter the existing bed-and-breakfast accommodation at Marine House on Hurst Road to create two apartments, as well as build on the current roof terrace to create a third.
A report by NFDC planning officer Vivienne Baxter acknowledged the proposal was contrary to policies which resist new residential homes in the greenbelt and seek to retain tourism amenities.
However, she pointed out that evidence submitted with the application demonstrated the bed-and-breakfast was not viable and had never operated at more than 55% capacity.
Previous planning consents show the building was originally designed as a two-storey restaurant with the upper floor later adapted to create bed-and-breakfast accommodation because the eatery business was said to be unviable.
The latest proposals will involve the second floor being split to create two self-contained units and a third level added to create another.
The NFDC planning report concluded: “It appears that the combination of the site’s remote location relative to the village centre and the impact of seasonal weather makes it difficult to sustain the level of business anticipated with the original two-storey café/restaurant.”
The ground floor of the building, which is home to The Lighthouse restaurant that opened in July 2020, will continue to operate as a cafe.