PLANS have been lodged to convert a vacant shop in Christchurch town centre into flats.

JKL Ltd is requesting permission for alterations and an extension to the ground floor unit at 113 Bargates to create two flats.

The unit is currently vacant, but operated as Bargates Fish and Chips until it closed in 2019.

The applicant has also requested a change of use from a shop to residential to allow the conversion to happen.

To facilitate the change of use, the ground floor would be extended to the rear and the internal layout altered to form two self-contained flats.

One would be accessed via the rear, while the other would benefit from both front and rear access.

The existing first floor flat and its access would be retained under the plans, although the existing shop front would be altered to reflect the new use.

A planning statement prepared by Spruce Town Planning Ltd on behalf of JKL Ltd said: “The proposals will provide new homes which are of an appropriate design and will respond well to the character of the area, whilst being accessible to local services.

“The proposal preserves the amenities of the neighbouring residential properties and will provide an appropriate level of amenity for the new dwellings.

“The proposals use land efficiently by creating additional homes in a highly accessible location.”