One of Dorchester’s landmark buildings could be converted into apartments.

Top o’ Town House, at the junction of High West Street and Bridport Road, has until recently been leased by the County Council.

The plans show the conversion of the Grade 2 listed building to nine apartments with the addition of a new house. The outside appearance will be almost identical to the existing although some trees, said to be in a poor condition, will be felled and others cut back.

The application, from owners Landmark Estates, was welcomed by Dorchester town council planning committee members on Monday evening (June 4th).

Cllr Richard Biggs said he accepted that there would be a loss of some trees with the development but welcomed the conversion, asking that downpipes on the building to the right of the main house, be moved to a less prominent position.

Planning chairman Robin Potter also welcomed the application but said he thought it was a shame the application was just inside the limit which would have ensured a contribution to a levy for community facilities, or the need to provide an ‘affordable’ home,

Documents commenting on the application call for measures to protect what might be the remains of a Roman road thought to lie underneath part of the site, although archaeologists says this should not affect the development.

In total the development is for five one-bed homes and five two-bed. A new lobby to the rear of the building will reduce the number of existing car parking spaces from 22 to 16, but will see a new area added for bin and cycle storage.

The committee decided not to raise an objection to the application.

Public comments on the proposal have to be received by West Dorset District Council by June 22nd.