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News in brief: 123,000 children spent holidays homeless; Acorn buys Exeter site for housing

Words: Laura Edgar
Kids should be enjoying the summer holidays, LGA says / iStock-531929752

A round-up of planning news: Tuesday 28 August, 2018

123,000 children spent holidays homeless

Councils across England have said that more than 123,000 children and their families have spent their school holidays homeless.

This is an increase of approximately 53,000 since the summer of 2011.

According to the Local Government Association (LGA), have been housing an additional 650 homeless children every month - the equivalent of an additional primary school’s worth of children every fortnight.

It called on the government to adapt welfare reforms and allow councils to borrow to build new homes, with the right infrastructure, to tackle the housing shortage, which the LGA said is the root cause of the homelessness crisis.


Acorn buys Exeter site for housing

Acorn Property Group has completed the purchase of eight acres of land from the Exeter Royal Academy for Deaf Education for a £50 million housing-led mixed-use scheme.

Designed by Clifton Emery, the St Leonards development has planning permission for 146 homes, a 61-bed care home and 86 assisted living units. The development will retain St Leonard’s pre-school on the site.

The dwellings will be one and two-bedroom apartments, and three, four and five-bedroom houses. Of the 146 homes, 34 per cent will be affordable.

The sale will help fund the academy’s new state of the art, purpose-built facility in Exmouth.

Construction on the St Leonards site is not expected to start until early 2020, once the academy has successfully relocated.


Dover serves notices to poorly maintained properties

Dover District Council has served Section 215 notices on The Castle Inn on Russell Street, and to two sites on the side of King Street at the junction with Flying Horse Lane, and 8 King Street in Dover.

The notices required improvements be made to the condition of the land and/or buildings. Further action is possible for non-compliance.

Officers at the council noted the poor condition of the Grade II listed Castle Inn, including the need to repair rendering and flaking paintwork on walls and architectural features, removing redundant electrical cables, replacing a lantern hood, and removing an advert panel, scaffolding and building materials.

The owners of land on the east side of King Street at the junction with Flying Horse Lane have been required to remove all waste, rubbish and refuse from the land, to cut overgrown vegetation, and to repair and paint the fencing surrounding the site.

The notice requires the owners of 8 King Street to repair the render to external walls, and make good flaking paintwork on the roof railing, and remove overgrown vegetation from gutters and down pipes.


Projects to protect agricultural land approved in Buckden

Huntingdonshire District Council’s development management committee has approved two construction projects being built as part of the £1.5 billion upgrade of the A14.

This is line with the recommendation made by officers.

First, permission was being sought by Highways England for the relocation of a drainage retention pond that had been approved as part of the A14 improvement scheme to an area outside the project’s approved boundary on the other side of the new road. It includes an access road to the pond for maintenance and an outfall pipe.

The pond was originally intended to be to the south of the A14. Landowners though, have requested that it be moved to the northern side to reduce the impact on farming operations and to save better quality farmland.

The second application involved work on four parcels of land that are also close to the Buckden gravel pits county wildlife site.


Kings Cross theatre approved

Camden Council has granted planning consent for a new 600-seat theatre at Kings Cross in London.

The theatre is part of a development known as P2, which will also contain nine floors of flexible office space as well as retail space on the ground floor.

The application was made by developer King’s Cross Central Limited Partnership. Architects Allford Hall Monaghan Morris designed the theatre.

The firm also designed Liverpool’s Royal Court Theatre and the Barbican’s art gallery.

Image credit | iStock