Former pub and restaurant could become six-bed home

The former Mermaid Pub, which later became the Mermaid Balti House, pictured in 2011.

The former Mermaid Pub, which later became the Mermaid Balti House, pictured in 2011. - Credit: Google Maps

A former Indian restaurant is set to be converted into a six-bedroom house under new plans.

The former Mermaid Balti House, on Norwich Road, Hedenham, has been closed for almost four years, with plans submitted to South Norfolk District Council's development management committee showing a new vision for the site.

In July 2020, councillors unanimously approved a bid to change the use of the building from an Indian restaurant, following its closure, to a residential property.

The former Mermaid Inn, Hedenham.

The former Mermaid Inn, Hedenham. - Credit: Archant

The plans included a proposed new access to the site being created onto Earsham Road. 

Now, new applicant Geoff Wilcockson has submitted plans to transform the pub both inside and out.


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The ground floor would include an open-plan kitchen and family room, as well as a reception room, formal dining room, playroom and a living room, as well as one bedroom.

Three more bedrooms would be created on the first floor, as well as a dressing room, two en-suites and a bathroom, while the second floor would include two more bedrooms.

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The new plans, designed by Beccles-based agent Qube Design Group, also keep the proposed new access onto Earsham Road, with a garage and four parking spaces to be built. 

The former Mermaid pub was converted into a restaurant in 2013, before closing its doors in March 2017.

The former Mermaid Pub, which later became the Mermaid Balti House, pictured in 2011.

The former Mermaid Pub, which later became the Mermaid Balti House, pictured in 2011. - Credit: Google Maps

Shortly afterwards, the council refused a separate application to replace the historic but derelict barn in the car park with a two storey building for holiday lets.

Two years later, an application was submitted to save, convert and extend the barn into a three-bedroom house with a double garage. 

Conditions placed on the application were changed shortly after permission was granted following the partial collapse of the barn during storms in February 2020.

Destruction caused by Storm Ciara at the Mermaid Inn in Hedenham near Bungay.

Destruction caused by Storm Ciara at the Mermaid Inn in Hedenham near Bungay. - Credit: Sally Connor

The former restaurant and pub had been listed for auction in September 2018, but failed to sell with a guide price of between £190,000-£225,000.

The timber-framed building was also once home to Channel 4's Time Team, which held an archaeological dig in 2011, finding evidence there of a pre-historic settlement dating from over 3,000 years ago.

Members of the public have until Wednesday, February 3, to comment on the applicant's latest plans.

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