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Unused town building could be turned into new homes

PUBLISHED: 05:40 23 May 2020

Inside the former maltings building as it stands now Picture: CURRY HYDE DLP

Inside the former maltings building as it stands now Picture: CURRY HYDE DLP

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A central Woodbridge building, unused for 50 years could be developed if new proposals are given the go-ahead.

The former maltings in the centre of Woodbridge has been empty for many years Picture: CURRY HYDE DLPThe former maltings in the centre of Woodbridge has been empty for many years Picture: CURRY HYDE DLP

The Crown Maltings, in Quay Street, date back to the 1850s and has served a number of uses over the years.

One of its more notable roles was as assembly rooms which hosted social events during and after the Second World War and up until the early 1970s.

For the past 50 years, however, the building has remained empty and is now in a poor state.

Attempts to bring it back into use over the years have struggled.

The inside of the former Crown Maltings building as it stands now Picture: CURRY HYDE DLPThe inside of the former Crown Maltings building as it stands now Picture: CURRY HYDE DLP

The new proposals would see the Maltings restored and a new building created behind it.

The two spaces would be split into two town houses and seven apartments, which would range from one to three bedrooms.

Parking will also be created at the rear of the site.

The nearby Crown Hotel would be unaffected by any approved plans.

For now Charles Curry-Hyde, the Australian-registered architect behind the project, is looking to create an online consultation where the public can learn more about his client’s plans for the building.

“It’s a project that there’s a lot of public interest in,” said Mr Curry-Hyde.

“That building has been such an eyesore for such a long time.

“Our ambition has been to make the new building feel very much like a piece of inner Woodbridge, with its beautiful brickwork and simple detailing.

“Given how plain the Maltings are, we believe it’s really important to not mimic it, but make the new building feel like a continuation of the existing context with clustered forms and tall facades.”

Members of the public will also be able to send in their questions online about the project before a formal application is sent to East Suffolk Council for its consideration.

As well as looking to the future of the building, those behind the project are keen to learn more about its history.

“We would love to see some photographs of that time,” said Mr Curry-Hyde.

“In fact, there is very surprisingly little documentation of the building, from that era or its use as a Maltings.”

The consultation website for the Maltings project is expected to launch soon.

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