Marks and Spencer could move to larger shop in Marlow

The exhibition yesterday

The exhibition yesterday

First published in News
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Bucks Free Press: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

MARKS and Spencer will move into a larger shop as part of a housing development in Marlow, if the project gets planning permission.

The food branch of the high street chain would move from its current position in Spittal Street further up the road to Windsor House, which would at least double its size.

Shanly Homes wants to turn the office complex on the corner of Spittal and Dean Streets into 11 flats- ten two bed and one one bed.

And they confirmed at a public exhibition at the vacant offices yesterday, that Marks and Spencer want to move into the ground floor retail space, below the flats.

Development manager for Shanly Group, Nathan Craker, said: "We have had a firm offer on the ground floor retail element.

"To tailor the plans to the occupier a new planning application will be put in, in due course."

Plans for the project have divided opinion since an application was submitted to Wycombe District Council in February.

But Shanly homes have come up with a different application; before the plans were for 14 homes- now it is just for 11.

Mr Craker said about the problems with the former plans: "It was mainly with regards to the mews housing that sat at the back.

"The council felt it was a little close to some of the boundaries.

"That mews housing has now gone completely."

The building has been vacant since HMV left the offices last year.

The new plans would have 20 parking spaces in the basement, which would be accessible via a car lift.

Shanly Homes said there is enough room within the complex for a number of cars to wait to use the lift, so it would not encroach on the road. There will also be three parking spaces at surface level.

Objections have also previously been made to the traditional design "apeing" classical architecture.

Mr Craker said: "The mock Georgian element was taken from other Georgian elements within key areas in Marlow...

"Maybe not everyone agrees. Architecture is a very subjective thing."

The commercial arm of Shanly Group is currently using three retail units on Spittal Street as pop-up shops, to encourage retail to the area.

But Mr Craker said due to the size of the current M&S building, this would not be considered for a pop-up shop and would be let to a new retailer.

Helen Belasco from The Marlow Society looked at the plans yesterday and said: "I think it is pretty good. I am a little worried, as always, about the extra parking, not only from the new flats but we are going to have a much more beguiling M&S."

Geoff Wood and Harriet Wilson, also from The Marlow Society, were broadly positive about the designs but said they were worried how the extra traffic would affect an already busy junction.

Mr Craker said they would take on board any feedback they received and put in a new planning application in a few weeks time.

Comments (1)

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10:43am Sat 19 Jul 14

CatherineAB says...

The Dean Street car park is right there, opposite, with a pedestrian crossing, about the best one could hope for! Adequate for customers, or should be. The present building is already towering above the corner, so the current plan will not be too noticeable. The real challenge would be for residential parking for the flats, where most of them could house at least two car-owners, and possibly three. Any thoughts?
The Dean Street car park is right there, opposite, with a pedestrian crossing, about the best one could hope for! Adequate for customers, or should be. The present building is already towering above the corner, so the current plan will not be too noticeable. The real challenge would be for residential parking for the flats, where most of them could house at least two car-owners, and possibly three. Any thoughts? CatherineAB
  • Score: 2

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