Vets finally approved

planning

A plan to demolish a dilapidated barn and build a new two-storey vets has finally been approved more than a year after it was put forward.

Several objections had been made to the plan by the Taylor family of Wilderness Farm in Great Witley – who already own the half-hectare triangular piece of land which the old barn sits in – who wanted to demolish a rundown building and replace it with a new two-storey veterinary surgery.

The plans were submitted to Malvern Hills District Council in March last year but not approved until last week.

The site lies within the grade II-listed Witley Court Park but is 900 metres away from Witley Court.

The objections were concerned about the size of the building in the original designs and type of materials which given it an “urban” look and would have a negative effect on the nearby court and church.

The objections called the building “excessive” and “very imposing” and the proposed access to the surgery was “highly dangerous.”

In reaction to the objections, the tallest part of the proposed building was subsequently lowered by just over a metre and other parts also lowered to make sure it was not as visible. The building would also be covered in wood to suit its surroundings.

An access road from Worcester Road was also removed after concerns about speeding and possible accidents.

The barn has not been used for a number of years and the new building would increase the footprint by around a quarter.

A number of trees, hedging and shrubs would be planted around the building on the remaining land.

The ground floor would contain a number of consulting rooms and spaces for pre-op preparation, operations, x-rays and dental work.

New recovery areas would also be built that would allow for animals to stay overnight when required.

Accommodation for staff who monitor and care for the animals overnight would also be built as well as offices and storage facilities.

The new vets would provide the equivalent of eight new part time jobs including a veterinary surgeon, veterinary nurses and admin staff without the closure of any existing businesses.

Great Witley Parish Council had raised some concerns about the size and look of the building as well as the dangerous access road from the busy Worcester Road but raised no objection to the latest altered plan before it was approved.

By Christian Barnett - Local Democracy Reporter