‘Historic’ silos in the heart of Andover are set to be demolished following the approval of a planning application.

Switch Logistics bought the former grain silos off of Weyhill Road in Andover, with planning documents revealing that they intend to knock down the 20m high structures, which dominate views of the area, to convert the site into a new distribution hub. A certificate of lawfulness for existing use was granted by Test Valley Borough Council (TVBC) last week, paving the way for the redevelopment to begin.

Residents had objected to the plans, with Gillian Harrington saying: “Andover has lost so much of its history. These silos stand as part of our agricultural history and should not be destroyed or forgotten, and were very much in use providing our grain for food.

“They will be a sight-seeing attraction for future generations, so should be maintained and remain standing.”

The former grain silos, off of Weyhill Road in Andover, have been dominating views of the surrounding area since being built in the 1940s. While the large concrete edifices have been condemned for grain storage since the 1990s, they have been used to mount telecoms equipment instead, with steel silos erected for storing grain.

Switch Logistics applied in June for a certificate of lawful use on the site, allowing it to continue to use it for offices and distribution, after a ‘speculative purchase’ of the property.

Under their plans for the site, the concrete silos will be demolished, while the steel silos will be sold to another business for reuse elsewhere, which will be achieved under permitted development laws and require no separate planning permission.

The site will then be reduced to a hardstanding for lorries to park on, with the offices and warehouse to continue in use for the time being.

Eight letters were received by the council regarding the development, with some raising concerns about potential traffic issues on Weyhill Road with the development.

Derek Davis said: “Although I'm very pleased that an eyesore will hopefully be coming down and the site will be put to good use, I have some concerns over the safety of cyclists, pedestrians and traffic at the entrance to the site.”

He said that “lorries will have difficulty in accessing Weyhill Road,” adding that the site will need to be reconfigured.

TVBC planning officer Katie Nethersole, however, said that “these considerations are not relevant” to the certificate being issued, with the possibility further applications to assuage residents’ concerns could be made in future.