Phoenix House

About This Project

Permitted Development from B1 Offices to C3 Residential to create 24 apartments and 2 town houses

Cowan Architects secured a first with the ‘Prior Approval’ for the conversion of a 2,025 sq.m. office building, Phoenix House in East Grinstead, West Sussex, into 24 self-contained flats under the new General Permitted Development Order 2013 (GPDO 2013).

This was one of the first instances of a project of this size in Sussex to gain ‘Prior Approval’ under the Government’s new GPDO 2013 and it sets a benchmark for other potential projects of this type and scale in the area.

Arranged over three storeys, the approved scheme offers 18 two-bed flats, 3 one-bed flats and 3 studio flats.

Further to the ‘Prior Approval’ we gained permission to add 2 new town houses set adjacent to the Western elevation of the existing building. The town houses are 3 storey with a bedroom en-suite on the ground and first floors, with open plan living spaces on the top floor. They were designed in a way as to complement Phoenix House in materiality although a more contemporary design allows the town houses to read as later additions.

A further separate planning permission was also achieved to convert the existing plant rooms at roof level into penthouse suites.

Since permitted development for the change-of-use from offices to residential was introduced in 2013 we have successfully secured Prior Approval for over 300 apartments across London and Home Counties.



East Grinstead, West Sussex