A plan to turn a former gym in a Ross-on-Wye into a support centre for local homeless people has reached the stage of a formal planning application.

Warm Welcome has already begun converting the disused hall behind 14 Gloucester Road, Ross-on-Wye, accessed from Corpus Christi Lane to the rear.

The work is the idea of Millie Boylan, a town councillor, who began Warm Welcome a year ago before taking on the lease of the hall in November.

Her GoFundMe page says she want to “raise awareness of homelessness and sofa surfing and the painful lack of affordable housing, and to raise funds to allow us to support people who are dealing with this, and / or numerous other issues”.

She plans to refurbish the building throughout, including putting in a kitchen, wheelchair access, walk-in shower room and new toilets.

“Some demolition is involved,” an agent’s letter with her planning application (number 240216) says.

It adds: “Work has already started in refurbishing the property when it was highlighted to her on the need for an application for change of use.”

The application now seeks permission to change the building’s use from “commercial, business and service” to “community and learning”, and can be commented on until February 19.

The centre would be open between 8am and 5pm on weekdays, and form 9pm to 5pm on Saturdays.