Chloe Shakesby

Planning permission granted for conversion of rural Northumberland barn into office space

Planning consent has been granted for the conversion of a rural Northumberland barn into new office space.

The traditional barn at Old Bewick, on the edge of the Northumberland National Park, is set to be converted into 4,250 sq ft of office space by Harehope Estate.

The conversion has been secured by the Newcastle office of Lichfields working with land agents and surveyors GSC Grays.

Agri-tech company DroneAG will occupy some of the building, while the surplus space will be available for other rural businesses looking to rent.

The project will receive grant funding through the Strategic Economic Infrastructure Fund provided by the North East Rural Growth Network.

Ali Gray, consultant at GSC Grays, commented: “Breathing new life into traditional buildings like Old Bewick is always a costly challenge.

“Grant funding was a crucial help and this is an excellent example of how rural funds can be put to good use, the project will help DroneAG to grow their business, create more highly skilled rural jobs and develop their cutting edge drone technology benefiting the farming industry, as well as provide further opportunities for other rural businesses.”

John Aynsley, planner at Lichfields, said: “The reuse of this agricultural building will enable the barn to be utilised as open plan offices with a reception area, kitchen and coffee space and conference room, providing a welcome rural working space for businesses.

“We are seeing increased demand for these working spaces outside of the traditional urban centers as businesses have adapted to flexibility required to thrive in a post pandemic economy.”

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