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Faversham Linen Service plans given go-ahead on old site after being devastated by a fire in June


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Planning applications to rebuild the burnt down Faversham Linen Services site have been approved.

The Victorian commercial laundry burnt to the ground in June and had been relocated to Whitstable.

Swale Borough Council has approved the move to rebuild the centre in Ashford Road, Faversham.

The former Faversham Linen Services site, which will be developed
The former Faversham Linen Services site, which will be developed

The planning committee met last Thursday to determine whether the business would be rebuilt on the same premises.

Cllr Brian Mulhern was at the meeting. He said: “It is part of Faversham’s history but it has to be rebuilt to modern requirements.

“It has my wholehearted support. I would like it back in Faversham. It’s a very historic part of the town, serving a good purpose with close links to the A2.”

At the Faversham Town Council’s September meeting, councillors approved the reconstruction but had some minor concerns.

This picture of Faversham Linen Services on fire was posted on Twitter by @CharmainCleaver
This picture of Faversham Linen Services on fire was posted on Twitter by @CharmainCleaver
Crews at the Faversham Linen Services fire
Crews at the Faversham Linen Services fire
The devastation after the fire at Faversham Linen Services
The devastation after the fire at Faversham Linen Services
The devastation after the fire at Faversham Linen Services
The devastation after the fire at Faversham Linen Services

They wanted Swale Borough Council to consider the impact that the height of the proposed building may have on neighbouring homes.

A nearby resident spoke about his concerns over the planned site.

He drew attention to the noise, working hours and the construction.

He said: “If the wind was blowing the other way on the day of the fire, I wouldn’t be objecting here today.

“But the planned building is much larger than the previous one. It’s unfortunate that it’s not in keeping with the area.”

The former Faversham Linen Services site, which will be developed
The former Faversham Linen Services site, which will be developed

Faversham Linen Services has been running since 1898 and is a family-owned businesses.

Bryan Cope is a director of the company and spoke at the Swale planning committee meeting.

He said: “Now this rebuild has been necessary because we want loyal staff, loyal customers and in doing that, we can achieve a good business. We have been in business now for some 90 odd years.”

“We would like to continue in Faversham. It is a good place to be. It would please me to go home tonight thinking that, yes, we have made a step on the way. A delay to the planning application is very expensive for us.”

Staff from Faversham Linen Services at their new site on the Joseph Wilson Industrial Site, Millstrood Road, Whitstable
Staff from Faversham Linen Services at their new site on the Joseph Wilson Industrial Site, Millstrood Road, Whitstable

Mr Cope said his accountants had informed him that he would lose £50,000 a week if the application was refused and they had to resubmit.

He said: “We will be bending over backwards so that we can be back in business in Faversham.”

The application was unanimously approved with the addition of a hedge.

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