PLANS for nearly 50 homes in the grounds of a large Elizabethan manor house in Purbeck have been submitted.

Developers Westcoast (Purbeck) already have permission for 23 homes on the site of Binnegar Hall, which is set in 17 acres of grounds at East Stoke.

However, planning permission is now being sought for an additional 48 houses, bringing the total to 71.

A village hall has also been proposed as part of the scheme.

Binnegar Hall was formerly a residential care home for adults with learning difficulties, which closed in 2014 and placed on the market for £2.5 million.

The decision to close the home was taken after a fruitless search to find a buyer willing to take over running it as a specialist care home.

Westcoast purchased the site and is currently making preparations to start construction of the 23 homes that received planning consent in July 2016.

The developer is only seeking outline planning permission for the 48 homes, with further details of the scheme set to be included in a subsequent application.

A combination of semi-detached and detached houses are currently proposed, including a total of 19 affordable homes.

Ken Parke Planning Consultants say in the developer’s planning application that East Stoke Parish Council has “indicated that there is currently a need for a village/community hall and there are no sites which are both suitable and available within the community area upon which to deliver this.”

The site is located on the A352 Worgret Road, and the application states two new bus stops are proposed with the development to “enhance accessibility to the bus routes which already run along the A352”.

Summing up the main benefits of the proposals, Ken Parke said: “The site is a previously developed brownfield site. The council has recently granted consent to change the use of and convert the existing buildings to housing; however, this does not make best use of the substantial site.

“The applicants are seeking a more comprehensive pattern of development including local social and economic benefit through the delivery of a new village hall, which will deliver much needed housing in an unconstrained and sustainable location.

“The site does not sit within any protected landscape or ecological designations. It is not within an area of flood risk and there are no significant technical constraints which indicate that development should be restricted.”

The plans are with Purbeck District Council.