East Sussex pub could be converted into dentist’s office

A former Crowborough pub could be set to be converted into a dentist’s office.
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In an application to Wealden District Council, Edenbridge-based dentists Blue Dental Laboratories Ltd are seeking planning permission to convert the Railway Tavern, a vacant former pub in Crowborough Hill.

According to the application, Blue Dental, which employs between five and 10 people, has already purchased the building and plans to move into the property once the conversion is complete.

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The proposed conversion involves a significant amount of internal alterations, with both the ground and first floor of the building to be converted into lab rooms and staff amenities.

The former Railway Tavern public house in Crowborough. Image via Google Maps.The former Railway Tavern public house in Crowborough. Image via Google Maps.
The former Railway Tavern public house in Crowborough. Image via Google Maps.

The proposals also include some external changes to the building, with upvc windows replacing existing timber frames and painted bricks at the ground floor to be rendered over. Brickwork at the first floor will be cleaned and retained, as will the former pub’s decorative lights.

The former pub, once also known as the Welcome Stranger, is not listed, but has previously been identified as a non-designated heritage asset. The applicant argues this should not prevent the works from going ahead, as the conversion would bring the building back into ‘viable use’.

In planning documents, a spokesman for the applicant said: “The refurbishment is a positive enhancement which will enable for the non designated heritage asset to be brought back into a viable use, thus increasing its longevity.

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“In terms of external alterations, it is considered that the proposals concerning the refurbishment of the former public house will preserve the elements of interest.

“Preservation of the decorative pub lights will allow for the historic and evidential significance of the former public house to be maintained.”

Plans also show the building would also have access to five off-road parking spaces as a result of an adjacent development.

For further information see application reference WD/2024/0182/F on the Wealden District Council website.