OLD council offices in a Herefordshire border town can be turned into a holiday let, council planners have said.

The former offices in Hay-on-Wye, which are set to be converted into a five-bed house with a two-bed annexe, can be used as a holiday let before the applicant, John Vasey, makes a move to the town.

An application submitted to the Brecon Beacons National Park Authority said the buildings, in Broad Street, were in need of "major refurbishment".

The structure was said to be "reasonably sound", but a leaking roof meant ceilings has collapsed in the main house, and it also needed extensive work to make it more energy-efficient.

The buildings date back to the 1880s, the plans said, adding permission to change the use to a single house was needed before embarking on the refurbishment, which would have "very substantial costs".

It said: "We intend eventually to move to Hay. We may well be accompanied by elderly dependent relatives who could occupy the annexe. In the meantime, we intend to let the property out for high-end holiday lettings for at least 30 weeks of the year.

"We believe this will contribute substantially to the tourist economy of Hay and the wider area."

It added the project would result in the preservation and enhancement of a landmark building, and would boost local businesses.

Hay Town Council did not object to the scheme, and Powys County Council later gave the scheme the go-ahead.