‘Ooty’ given go-ahead for total refurbishment

Rear of 'Ooty'
Rear of 'Ooty'

AN eyesore building which has stood empty for more than 30 years is set to be completely refurbished and turned into houses.

Developers have been given the go-ahead to revamp the derelict Ooty building, in The Green, St Leonards and convert it into three self-contained cottages with a side extension.

The scheme by Jade Strategies Ltd was met with unanimous approval by councillors on Hastings Borough Council’s planning committee last Wednesday (April 24).

Ooty, which was once used as a doctors’ surgery but abandoned more than three decades ago, was sold at auction for £157,000 in February last year.

The property is one of a half a dozen East Sussex County Council snapped up in the late 1970s to make way for the controversial Spur Road plan which never came to fruition.

More than £60,000 was spent on maintaining Ooty and the other properties over the years before they were sold off.

Planning officers at the borough council received four letters of objection to the proposal for Ooty before last Wednesday’s meeting.

Objectors cited loss of privacy, inadequate access for cars and inadequate parking provision.

Ray Crawford, the council’s development control manager, said: “This proposal includes the complete refurbishment of the existing dilapidated building, including its roof, one of the most visible signs of deterioration.”

Cllr Peter Pragnell said: “This site has had a long and unhappy history. This application strikes me as a massive improvement to what is already there.”