Plan to demolish Combe Martin church

Joseph Bulmer

Bid to knock down former Roman Catholic church in the village and build a family home.

PLANS have been submitted to demolish the former Roman Catholic church in Combe Martin and build a four bedroom family home.

The 1960s church on the main road was auctioned off in August of last year and the application seeks to create a two storey house with detached double garage.

According to a statement accompanying the application, a dwindling congregation saw the church hold its last Mass in 2009 and the site initially failed to sell so it was put up for auction.

Due to a lack of demand either as a church or community facility, the statement argues that the only realistic and viable redevelopment opportunity is for residential use.

A new vehicle access off the main road is proposed, leading through under the dwelling to parking at the rear.

Concern has been expressed by Devon County Council over the parking and access arrangements, which it says could conflict with traffic on the main road.

A county archaeological officer pointed out the site lies within the historic centre of Combe Martin, where evidence of early post-medieval lead silver smelting has been discovered.

He said it was possible buried archaeological deposits, features or

artefacts were present beneath the church and advised a full programme of archaeological work be carried out before any development took place.