PLANNING permission is being sought for work that would facilitate the creation of a 'community café' and accompanying kitchen.

An interior renovation would take place at the Grade II-listed Coach House, which is linked to Stricklandgate House, also Grade II-listed, in Kendal town centre by a modern extension.

The application form submitted to South Lakeland District Council says the Coach House currently contains a 'simple kitchen' and is used as a community food larder.

It says the building would be developed into a 'training kitchen' serving a 'community café and community larder at the centre of a community hub'.

The plan would see a 1.5-metre gap created in the wall that currently divides the Coach House from a meeting room in the modern extension. 

The application form says the meeting room would become the café. The creation of the gap would facilitate access between the café and kitchen.

A design and access statement submitted in support of the plan says the proposed works are 'internal and minimal'.

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"The layout has been designed in such a way as to ensure minimal disruption to the building," it says.

An extraction system would be routed through the ceiling via an existing, redundant duct. 

"This will be minimally visible from the outside of the building as it will exit at height through the roof," says the design and access statement.

The application for listed building consent has been submitted by Jill Salmon, of Stricklandgate House Trust Ltd. The organisation's website says the trust was set up in 1993 to 'provide accommodation and common services and facilities for voluntary organisations in South Lakeland'.

A heritage statement submitted in support of the application says Stricklandgate House is currently home to 12 charitable or voluntary organisations that 'support the welfare and caring needs of local people'.

"It is considered that proposals are sensibly designed and efforts have been made to utilise the existing structure of the building to minimise the visual impact externally," says the statement.

"The proposals will enable more people to use and visit Stricklandgate House and engage with this important historic building."