Published: 16:29, 20 June 2022
| Updated: 16:31, 20 June 2022
The Kent headquarters of one of the UK's largest logistics companies could be demolished for new apartments.
A planning application to redevelop Hermes House in St John's Road, Tunbridge Wells, to build new homes has been submitted to the local authority.
If given the go ahead, the HQ of Logistics UK, formerly the Freight Transport Association, would be knocked down for 43 apartments.
Plans would see studio, one bedroom and two bedroom homes with private balconies built in a newly erected four-storey building.
There would also be 53 on-site car parking spaces, including electric vehicle charging spaces and 44 cycle parking spaces with secure storage.
Logistics UK moved into the building more than three decades ago, in 1985, and employs around 120 people in the town.
It said the ageing building isn't suitable for their needs and the accommodation at the current site has been described as "poor quality".
A planning statement said: "As a result of the poor quality of existing employment accommodation and its poor public transport accessibility and location within a residential area, Logistics UK has been planning to vacate Hermes House and relocate to a more appropriate premises and location within Tunbridge Wells.
"This process has been expedited owing to the pandemic with the shift to a greater proportion of staff working from home thus requiring a smaller area of employment floor space in any event."
It continued: "The buildings are dated and require significant investment to bring them up to modern standards, but such investment is not justified given the sub-optimal office location.
"Moreover, the buildings, being a church conversion and extension, are awkward, inefficient and inflexible and do not lend themselves to modern working practices for office or any other employment use."
The site currently has two linked three storey office buildings, one of which was built in the 1930s as a church conversion. An extension was added to it in the 1980s and provides two floors of offices.
There is no details of how much the new apartments would cost, if plans were approved by Tunbridge Wells Borough Council, however, none have been identified as affordable housing.