22 West Street is a late Georgian town house dating back to about 1810, built on the site of a former Brewhouse, coach house and stable. The house is set over three storeys with extensive basement accommodation. Originally built as an L-shaped building, a single storey pavilion style addition with a domed and ribbed ceiling was made to the rear of the house in about 1840, joined to the original building by a circular linking lobby. A further addition was made in about 1880 between the main house and the pavilion. The house remained in private ownership until it was passed to the ''Mayor, Alderman and Citizens of Chichester'' in September 1944. 3 years later, in 1947, the building was converted and adapted for use as a public reference library and remained as such for 20 year until the new library was opened in Tower Street in 1967. In 1971 the property became privately owned once again and was used as a family dwelling at the lower level with offices above. More recently, the property has been solely used as an office building.
The proposed changes to the current layout create an exceptional family house set right in the heart of this historic city. The entrance to the house becomes set back from its current location, creating a porch. The wide entrance hall is open to a new staircase and leads through to a rear hallway and the main reception rooms. The rooms to the east of the building are opened out to form a large open-plan sitting room, dining area and kitchen with doors opening out to the rear courtyard garden. The pavilion-style room with the domed and ribbed ceiling becomes a grand drawing room to the property, giving a great sense of scale and period character. To the ground floor there would also be a study and cloakroom.
The lower ground floor converts into a utility/boot room and
laundry room to the main house, as well as a large family room with light wells. This space could be used as a games room or home cinema. In the front section of the lower ground floor, a self-contained flat is created, with independent access available from the rear courtyard garden of the building. This flat comprises a living room with kitchenette, a bedroom and a bathroom. The first floor comprises the principal bedroom suite with dressing room and bathroom, as well as a further guest bedroom with en suite shower room. The current plans orientate the principal bedroom at the front of the house but, subject to planning, it may be possible to orientate the bedroom to the rear of the building, overlooking the courtyard garden. On the second floor of the house there are proposed to be 3 further bedroom, 2 with en suite bathrooms, as well as a further family bathroom. A staircase from this floor leads up to the attic floor which would provide a generous storage area running the depth of the eastern end of the house and almost the full width of the house to the front.
Included in the proposed plans is a platform lift servicing the lower ground, ground and first floor. This would be set in what is currently an enclosed courtyard almost in the centre of the ground floor. At the rear of the house, a courtyard garden can be created from what is currently a gravelled parking area, accessed from Tower Street. This area provides a view of the Cathedral spire between the buildings and would provide a peaceful space in the heart of the city. At the far end of the courtyard, vehicular access would lead to a motorised turntable, enabling easy manoeuvring for cars.