Furniture shop which has been in Erewash for over 100 years set to be converted into bedsits

Burton's Home Furniture, on Beaconsfield Street, could be forced to move out by the owner of the building - who is applying to change it into two houses of multiple occupation.
Burton's Home Furniture, on Beaconsfield Street, could be forced to move out by the owner of the building - who is applying to change it into two houses of multiple occupation.

A furniture shop which has been in Long Eaton for more than 100 years is set to be kicked out of its building to make room for bedsits.

Burton’s Home Furniture, on Beaconsfield Street, could be forced to move out by the owner of the building - who is applying to change it into two houses of multiple occupation.

This is against the wishes of those who run the business.

They have gathered a list of 42 objectors which they have submitted to the council, along with a letter outlining their objections.

It states that “generations have furnished their homes from Burtons” and it is “not in local interest to take furniture shop away”.

The letter also states that it is a “well-established store with a loyal customer base from town and surrounding areas” which “brings economic viability to the town”.

Combined, the proposed two houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) would have 14 bedsits.

The application has been submitted by the building’s owner, John Austen. 

The ground floor would contain eight bedrooms and a shared kitchen, laundry and sitting area. Each room would have its own bathroom.

The kitchen would also have an external door onto the side yard with a bike store and bin storage area.

Meanwhile, the first floor would have six bedrooms – which would also have their own bathrooms – along with shared kitchen, dining and laundry areas.

The plans have been recommended for approval by Erewash Borough Council.

Councillors on the authority’s planning committee will make a decision on the application on Wednesday, January 23.

The council’s housing strategy officer is satisfied that the rooms are of a sufficient size and that residents would have easy access to the town centre, with car parking available at two public sites nearby.

They wrote: “There seems to be an increasing number of HMOs being developed.

“There does seem to be some demand from those under 35, who would be restricted to ‘single room rent’ for housing benefit.

“For those not on housing benefit, I assume that sharing in a good quality new development, with en-suite bathrooms may be attractive, if costs are less than, for example, a one bedroomed flat.”

A letter of support from the building’s owner states: “The building requires substantial investment funds to bring up to date.  

“This together with the economic future as a retail shop is not sustainable.  

“I have personally subsidised the building to the tune of several thousand pound and am unable to do this anymore.

“The potential new owners are offering huge investment which will benefit the area and fit well with what has already been achieved.”

Planning officers stated: “The comments made regarding the existence of a shop here for over 100 years and its loyal customer base are noted but are not material planning considerations to resist its change of use.

“The proposed impact on the amenity of neighbours is considered minimal.

“Due to the building’s location within the town centre, the site is sustainably located close to local amenities and public transport.

“Accordingly, it is considered that this makes the site suitable for the proposed conversion to residential use.”

Full conversion and management of the HMO will require a separate licensing application.

Eddie Bisknell , Local Democracy Reporting Service