The Coach House
Rebecca Wayman

Developers come together for 'ambitious' housing scheme in Gosforth

A company which specialises in developing historic buildings has joined forces with the owners of a prestigious property to create a new housing scheme.

Plans are currently being developed to convert The Coach House at The Drive, Gosforth into luxury apartments and houses by FiftyTwo Group, in conjunction with McDougall Dodds Limited, who own the property.

Subject to planning approval, the joint development will retain all of the historic features of the building which is located in the heart of an upmarket residential area.

McDougall Dodds, a family-run business with property holdings in the Gosforth area, has owned the building since the 1970s.

Chris Summers, managing director, said he had spent some time finding the right company to work with. He said: “I have seen what the FiftyTwo Group has achieved with their development at Old Elvet in Durham, transforming a Grade II listed building into 12 luxury homes.

“I realised they had exactly the right kind of understanding to sympathetically develop the property and retain the character of the building while still creating luxury accommodation.”

The Coach House, together with the Gatehouse also located at the Drive, are the last remaining parts of Coxlodge Hall, a mansion built in Gosforth by Job Bulman in 1796 which occupied a site of more than 30 acres.

The house itself was destroyed by fire in 1877 but rebuilt two years later and passed through many owners until it became a private school. It was demolished in 1939.

The Coach House has been in use as offices since the 1950s but the planned scheme - if given the green light - will see the Grade II listed building restored to residential accommodation and ensure its future.

The FiftyTwo Group was set up by entrepreneurs, Fergus Bell and Daniel Gibson, who attracted international interest in their conversion of the former Durham County Club.

“We are delighted to be working with Chris on what will be an extremely exciting development in one of the most prestigious addresses in the North East.

“The Coach House has had a fascinating history and with our previous experience of listed building development, we are confident that there will be a huge amount of interest in the plans.”

The scheme will now be presented to Newcastle City Council and it is hoped that it will gain approval later in the year.

If all goes according to plan, it is anticipated building will commence early in 2019, with a six to nine month conversion period, although the properties will be available to buy off plan prior to completion of the scheme.

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