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Former GP surgery could be converted into flats to boost ‘desperate need’ for housing

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A former GP surgery could be converted into a block of flats to boost Lynn’s “desperate need” for more housing.St James Medical Practice was formerly found at County Court Road, but recently relocated to Edward Benefer Way in South Wootton.Now, Jamie Ring of Ruby Circle Ltd has submitted a planning application which, if approved, would see the County Court Road building turned into 11 flats.

The former St James Medical Practice on County Court Road could be converted into flats. Picture: Google Maps

A client statement submitted as part of the application states that there has been no interest from the open market while the building has been advertised as a community asset.The hopes of another medical practice taking the building on are “extremely slim” as the Care Quality Commission (CQC) is understood to regard the building as “no longer fit for purpose”. The surgery is located in the St James House building, which is believed to have been modified on numerous occasions over the past 50 years.The client statement adds: “King’s Lynn town centre is in desperate need of more residential accommodation, both for main occupancy and for the visitor economy.“This conversion will create 11 such properties that will all have a parking space too. This will take cars off the road, where patients at the surgery used to park.“We need, in King’s Lynn, to celebrate and use our public open spaces, like The Walks. “These 11 properties will help to do just that, whilst removing a large amount of daily traffic and restoring St James House back to a home for King’s Lynn residents.”The planning application states that the majority of the work done to convert the surgery into flats would be internal. However, large air conditioning condensers which were added to the outside walls during its time as a GP practice are considered to “look unsightly and certainly not in keeping with the area”. These would be removed during the redevelopment.The flat proposals were submitted in early April and validated by West Norfolk Council last week, with a consultation phase currently open. Following the relocation of the St James Medical Practice to Edward Benefer Way, it now offers primary care services to more than 20,000 patients and houses 11 consulting rooms.It also includes four new treatment rooms and a range of other specialist and multi-purpose rooms.

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