Developers seek residential future for Ely chapel

Zion Baptist Chapel in Butchers Row

Zion Baptist Chapel in Butchers Row - Credit: Archant

A BAPTIST chapel at the heart of Ely that dates back to the mid 19th century could be converted into a house under plans submitted by its owners this week.

Agents acting for leaseholder Marcus Richardson have requested a change of use for the Zion Baptist Chapel, built in about 1855, from retail outlet to house.

Since 2001, the chapel, in Butchers Row, has served as an office and as a music shop but has sat empty for almost two years as estate agents have been unable to find a new tenant.

In a report to East Cambridgeshire District Council, the developers said: “The unit has now been vacant for almost two years. BNP Paribas Real Estate have been attempting to market this property during this time.

“It has become obvious that the property was not suitable for a retail operation and that there is no interest from retailing operators for a unit of this size and this location.”

The developers added that converting the property into housing would be the most viable use for the owners, who have a lease on the building until 2023.

A decision on the plans is expected within the next eight weeks. To view the plans, or to have a say, visit