The Strange Tale of the Chemist Shop
In 1988 the Parish Council took the decision to sell the existing Village Hall (the old school) to help finance the new village hall that was being built nearby. The Council suggested outline planning permission should be sought for the hall to become a house; to be used for light industry; or even to become a development plot for up to three houses. There were problems, however, because the old school was sited on common land, within the conservation area, and it was agreed that the old part of the building (including the windows) must be preserved. Eventually it was advertised as 'Mulbarton Common: Former Village School in nearly ¼ acre. Outline Planning Permission for conversion to One Residential Dwelling. Offers invited in the region of £89,000' Eventually the hall was sold for commercial development.
There was no argument about the old school becoming a dental surgery (though some lament the changes to the north-facing window - seen in photo above). The cloakroom annexe was converted to an office and let to a financial advisor. But plans to build a new chemist shop on the site of temporary sheds in the old playground was a different matter..... There was huge opposition, both to a chemist shop (replacing the pharmacy at the doctors' surgery for all Mulbarton villagers) and to a commercial building on common land.