Historic Hartlepool park keeper’s lodge could become offices

The former park keeper's lodge at Ward Jackson Park.
The former park keeper's lodge at Ward Jackson Park.

A former park keeper’s lodge could be brought back into use under plans by a town recruitment company.

Planning permission for a change of use of the lodge in Ward Jackson Park will go before planning councillors next week.

The scheme by Adept Professional Services is being recommended for approval by council officers, who say it will bring a town heritage asset back into use after standing empty for a number of years.

The recruitment company is currently operating from the Innovation Centre, at Queen’s Meadow Business Park.

Planning papers state: “The business finds recruitment opportunities for unique occupations and therefore needs premises to reflect the eclectic nature of the clientele and portray the company image.

“The submitted documentation states that the business is proposed within West Park to capture people within an upmarket area where people would be able to walk in off the street.”

The application adds that up to 12 staff would work there Monday to Friday between 8.30am and 6.30pm.

Some internal works would be carried out to turn the rooms into offices but no changes to the outside of the Grade II listed building are proposed.

Six car parking spaces within the curtilage of the lodge are included as part of the application.

The lodge was built as part of Ward Jackson Park in 1883 and is a designated heritage asset and also falls within the Park conservation area.

Hartlepool Civic Society has said it is pleased that the future of the building would be secured.

The report by planning officer Helen Heward adds: “The proposed change of use will bring back into use a heritage asset, vacant for a number of years, which is considered to be a considerable benefit of the scheme.”

The planning committee meeting takes place on Wednesday at Hartlepool Civic Centre, at 10am and is open to the public.