Norfolk

Norwich sinkhole hotel could become home

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Media captionThe sink hole opened up next to the hotel in 2016

A former hotel that almost plunged into a sinkhole three years ago could be brought back into use - as a home.

Plantation House on Earlham Road in Norwich suffered significant subsidence in April 2016 when a 20ft (6m)-deep hole opened up beneath it.

It had been feared the grade II-listed structure, built in 1857, would need to be demolished.

Now a planning application has been put in to rescue the building and convert it into a home.

Graham Briggs, of North Walsham, has applied to Norwich City Council to carry out works on the building to turn it into a single house with a new conservatory, garage and access gate, says the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

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Image caption Graham Briggs, of North Walsham, has applied to Norwich City Council to carry out works on the building to turn it into a single house with a new conservatory, garage and access gate

The plans would also see Victorian-style iron gates erected to differentiate between the house's private grounds and Plantation Gardens, which is a open to the public.

These gates would demarcate the boundaries, but maintain a view of the property.

Roger Connah, chairman of the Plantation Gardens Trustees, supported the plans and said they would be good news for the surrounding area.

He added the plans did not in any way compromise the public access to Plantation Gardens, with the trustees still holding the lease for the public areas.

Image caption Plantation House is close to the spot on Earlham Road where a double decker bus sank into a hole in the road in 1988

He said: "It will take some time for the work to be done.

"The sinkhole still needs to be filled and then the works to the house itself, but once complete it has the potential to be the best property in Norwich."

The hotel was previously owned by MJB Hotels, but has not operated as a hotel since 2016.

It is close to the spot on Earlham Road where a double decker bus sank into a hole in the road in 1988.

The Earlham Road area is built over a number of chalk quarries and tunnels.

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