Historic Hartlepool building to reopen after 'complete overhaul'

Plans have been approved to bring a historic seaside site back into use as a shop.

Thursday, 15th April 2021, 10:03 am

Proposals have been given the go-ahead by Hartlepool Borough Council’s planning department to convert the Rocket House, at Seaton Carew, into a seafront retail outlet.

The building on The Front was originally built to store equipment needed to save lives at sea by the means of rocket lines and is currently vacant.

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The Rocket House in a photo taken earlier in 2021.
The Rocket House in a photo taken earlier in 2021.

A report from senior council planning officer Laura Alderson confirmed the proposals have been approved, adding they should benefit the area.

She said: “The proposed development would see the creation of a small retail unit adjacent to the Seaton Carew local centre and within close proximity to the seafront and related tourist facilities.

“This would support the tourism and leisure function of the area.”

The shop is to be home to two full-time jobs, according to planning documents.

The Rocket House nearly a decade ago.

Hartlepool Civic Society wrote to the council saying: “Hartlepool Civic Society welcome the application as it will hopefully preserve the building and promote interest in its history, whilst adding to the economic viability of the wider area.”

A design and access statement previously submitted on behalf of the applicant reiterated how the plans will benefit the Seaton Carew Conservation Area.

It said: “Currently the building cosmetically is in a poor state of repair and externally requires a complete overhaul.

“The refurbishment of the Rocket House with the retention of its existing character will only enhance the area.

“As part of the development the entire building will be externally refurbished and redecorated in order to bring it to a standard worthy of the seafront terrace and to enhance the terrace itself in line with other current developments in the vicinity.”

The plans state that the materials used will “allow longevity against the seafront elements”.

The building dates back until at least the 1940s and was also used as a part-time police station around the 1980s and as a first aid site.

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