St Michael’s owners Hayward & Co have formally submitted their planning application. The public have until 31st March to comment, after which the District Council’s planning officer will weigh up all the evidence and comments and produce his recommendation.
The application (which is split into two, because part of it requires special Listed Building consent) is to build 95 homes on the site, demolishing work units which get in the way.¬† Although profit from the sale of the homes is supposed to finance the repair of the remaining historic buildings, the size of the active part of the Estate will be greatly reduced, and most traders will be restricted to just clean, quiet “office” type occupations.¬† This is a marked step away from the present-day mix of artisans which has made St Michael’s such a success in recent years and Enterprise St Michael’s doubts its long term viability, is concerned about damage to the wider local economy, and fears a loss of tourist trade.
The main planning application is 1/D/11/002012, and the Listed Building one WD/D/16/002853. Both are accessed via the Council’s website dorsetforyou.gov.uk; follow the link to “Application Search” under Planning and Housing.