The company behind a popular Ely hotel wants to extend its accommodation into the building JD Wetherspoon previously tried to convert into a pub.  

Interesting Hotels Group, which Poets House is part of, has submitted plans to transform 24 St Mary’s Street into apartments for guests.  

If given the go-ahead, plans show the currently empty Grade-II listed building with 13 apartments across three floors, ranging from studios to two-bedrooms. 

The site will also offer parking and is a two-minute walk from the hotel’s main building.  

A design and access statement submitted with the plans says: “The current and recent economic environment of rising costs and restrained customer budgets creates a challenging environment for the hotel industry.  

“These pressures are acutely felt by small hotels such as Poets House making it essential that investments are made to improve productivity and at the same time creating an improved customer offering.  

“The original Georgian architecture together with its close proximity to Poets House make number 24 an ideal extension to the number and style of rooms available.  

“With the plans presented we are able to bring an unused building of historic importance back into viable economic use without major changes to its fabric thereby making a uniquely positive contribution to the city and business of Poets House.” 

East Cambridgeshire planners are considering two applications for the scheme – listed building consent and a full planning application for the conversion work.  

The proposed works to the former King's Ely boarding house are described as “minimal, with very minor changes externally”, and that internal changes “mainly affect more modern elements”.  

There will not be “any new extensions or buildings within the site”, the plans also state.  

Last August, JD Wetherspoon put 24 St Mary’s Street on the market after its proposals were repeatedly refused.  

Even though it decided to take a step back from trying to open a pub in Ely, a spokesperson said at the time they “would not rule out” future options.