Historic pub to converted into new offices and homes

Plans to transform a derelict 19th Century pub into new offices, homes, a business hub and a licensed cafe/coffee shop have been submitted to North Somerset Council following consultation with the local community.

Studio Hive – an award-winning group of property developers and architects set up in 2014 by Jason Collard and his wife Natalie – has submitted updated plans to revive The Battleaxes in Wraxall.

Once used as a temperance inn for workers at the nearby Tyntesfield Estate, the Grade II listed pub was built in 1882.

The Battleaxes was restored in 2010 before being acquired by the Country Pub Group in 2019. However it closed prior to the first Covid lockdown in early 2020 and has not re-opened since, after the Country Pub Group went into administration.

Under the Studio Hive proposals, a new two-storey extension would be built at the rear of the pub to supplement the main building to create new offices for the business. A new business hub will be based in the main building, with the bed and breakfast rooms at the pub retained and the existing stable building converted into new business units.

There would also be an on-site farm shop concession, run by a local operator and selling locally sourced produce within the ground-floor cafe, with new communal gardens and an opportunity for space to be made available to local organisations and community groups. To complement the conversion there will seven new low carbon homes built on the site.

The development includes 44 car parking spaces, along with cycle storage and electric vehicle charging points.

The Studio Hive plans have been supported by Wraxall and Failand Parish Council.

Jason Collard, managing director of Studio Hive, said the final details of the application continue to be discussed with the council’s planning department, and that he hopes to see a positive outcome soon.

“Our proposals are designed to inject new life into the heart of Wraxall,” he said.

“The Battleaxes will be a place to meet, live, work, pick up groceries, grab a coffee or take part in society. We intend to return the Grade II listed building into active use while respecting its character and making better use of the historic building.”

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