A derelict Weymouth church, wrecked by fire in January 2002, is expected to be redeveloped into 25 one-bed flats.

The Maiden Street Methodist Church has been left in a semi-derelict state since the fire with various schemes suggested over the years for the site – including a restaurant and a previous scheme for flats which although agreed, proved too costly to build.

Now Dorset Council has received an application from Cranbourne (Weymouth) Ltd to create 25 apartments on the site. A Birmingham-based agent is acting for the company.

The detailed application includes listed building consent for reconstruction and change of use of the former Grade 2 listed church together with remedial works for an existing chapel house.

The proposals details 25 one-bed apartments on the site over six levels with the re-use of an existing three-bed house once renovated. The sixth floor will be used as bedrooms for flats on the fifth floor.

A planning document says that Cranbourne bought the site in 2016: “At present, the site serves no useful purpose. It detracts significantly from the character of the conservation area and the vitality and viability of the town. Its redevelopment would be of great benefit to the area; would improve the townscape and the conservation area, and would deliver a viable use for the listed building. Cranbourne wishes to deliver this aspiration and has a track record of delivering high quality development schemes.”

The church was designed in 1865 in the “Lombardic Romanesque” style. The applicaton says the facade will be reconstructed, using some of the original materials, to include a new rose window, to replicate the previous one, but constructed in steel.

Said a consultant report: “The scale and massing would be similar to the previously consented scheme in 2007. It has been designed with considerable input from statutory consultees over a number of meetings and with numerous revisions, to reach a position where consultees agree that, in principle, the design is acceptable.”

Public comments on the proposal will be open until June 18th . The council is proposing that the final decision will be made, not by councillors, but by a planning officer.