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Former Clachnaharry House Care Home to be converted into tourist flats after Highland Council planners give the application their backing

By Ian Duncan

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The former Clachnaharry care home.
The former Clachnaharry care home.

Planners have approved an application to convert a former city care home into tourist flats.

The plans were submitted to Highland Council by Inverness-based Henderson Group, which originally asked to turn the former Clachnaharry House Care Home into a block of 31 one-bedroom self-catering holiday apartments.

The two-storey care home had its licence cancelled in 2013 after the Care Inspectorate expressed significant concerns about the standard of care offered.

According to the decision notice which has been issued by the council, permission has been granted subject to a number of conditions.

In the document David Mudie, the council’s area planning manager, said the number of flats in the development would be reduced to 25, none of which should be used as a permanent residence.

Otherwise, Mr Mudie said: “The proposals accord with the provisions of the development plan and there are no material considerations which would warrant refusal of the application.”

Construction will be allowed between 8am and 7pm, Monday to Friday and 8am and 1pm on Saturdays, but not at any time on Sundays or bank holidays.

A supporting statement from consultants Ness Planning stated: “The demand for tourist accommodation, particularly to serve the NC500 and tourists heading north, is well documented.

“Demand for self-catering facilities is also increasing as the first choice of preference by many tourists.

“This proposal is therefore considered to be an appropriate and acceptable use of a vacant premises and will make a positive contribution to not only the area in general, but also the vitality of the local economy.”

Each apartment will comprise a double bedroom with en-suite facilities and adjoining lounge and kitchen area. The proposed layout is based on the existing floorplan and the current corridors, staircase access and main doors will not need to be altered.

It is also proposed to create a small flat for an on-site manager, as well as a reception/office at the main entrance, a small vending area and laundry area.

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