Wiltshire

Locarno revamp is renewed by developer, Bach Homes

Locarno building in Swindon
Image caption The developer hopes to submit a formal planning application next August

The owner of the Locarno building in the centre of Swindon has renewed his efforts for its revamp.

Bach Homes Locarno Ltd's old proposals and planning appeals have been ditched at a cost of "a few hundred thousand pounds" in favour of a new idea.

Director Steve Rosier said: "Clearly the previous planning permissions were not perfect and perhaps this is an opportunity to find a better solution."

The developer has begun working with various groups to create the new plan.

'Right solution'

"What's changed in the last three or four months is that Swindon Council asked Forward Swindon to get involved, who are obviously the drivers for regeneration in Swindon.

"We then formed a working party with Forward Swindon, the director of planning and the planning officers, English Heritage on board, and our architects," added Mr Rosier.

Mr Rosier hopes this new approach will help to iron out any potential problems before a formal planning application is submitted.

"We couldn't have a situation where we worked creatively with officers in a meeting, and then the next day get into a planning battle with them.

"So we made the decision that for the sake of finding the right solution that could restore the building it was better to park up the past and commit 100% to the process with the working party," added Mr Rosier.

Swindon Borough Council has said it welcomed the appeals being withdrawn and confirmed it was working with the developer to come up with a solution.

The aim is to hold a public consultation in the new year with a formal application to be submitted in August 2013.

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