The Watford NAWT site could be demolished for modern facilities and a distribution centre to replace it under new plans.

For more than 50 years the National Animal Welfare Trust has rehomed and cared for pets in Tylers Way, between the M1 and A41. More recently, however, its facilities have become outdated.

If forthcoming plans are approved, the charity will sell part of the land to a developer to raise funds to build a whole new setup in another part of same site.

Watford Observer: New NAWT site masterplan set for submission.New NAWT site masterplan set for submission. (Image: NAWT)

National Animal Welfare Trust CEO Rob Mitchell said: “We’ve been there 52-years, the facilities have become very run down and difficult to maintain.

“It’s become very expensive for us.”

Keeping pets warm has required mini heaters around the accommodation and new regulations in the pipeline could soon necessitate expensive upgrades to existing facilities to make them compliant.

Mr Mitchell explained that, without the sale of the older part of the land, NAWT would not be able to afford the upgrades it needs. Other solutions would mean the charity would have to stop its work rehoming animals in Watford for a year or more.

Instead, the plans mean it should have a new site ready to move into by the time the original buildings must be demolished, eliminating the need for temporary closure.

Watford Observer: NAWT site CGI.NAWT site CGI. (Image: NAWT)

Proposed new buildings include an admin block, staff accommodation, and cat and dog rehoming and boarding facilities. The planning application is expected to go live on the Hertsmere Borough Council planning portal soon.

It is understood that the developer would use the rest of the NAWT site to build a distribution centre. The Mercure Hotel site nearby is also set for a distribution centre, but the proposed warehouse in Tylers Way will apparently be much smaller.

“It’s really quite exciting for us and without it we would really have problems,” the CEO added.

“It’s an exciting opportunity that, fingers crossed, will allow us to be there another 50 years.”

The National Animal Welfare Trust rescues animals and rehomes them across five centres in England. The Watford location was its first centre.