Log in | Register

News in brief: Care home in Bath gets go-ahead; Lewisham mayor wants to protect heritage buildings

Words: Laura Edgar
Bath care home approved / Hallmark Care Homes Ltd

A round-up of planning news: Tuesday 11 February, 2020

Care home in Bath gets go-ahead

Care provider Hallmark Care Homes has been granted planning permission to develop a 79-bed care home in Bath, Somerset.

The 1.3-acre site, which is on Frome Road, will provide residential, dementia and nursing care.

Planning consultancy Turley worked with Hallmark Care Homes to secure the consent, and Savista Developments will build the care home.

It is expected to create 120 jobs, and will feature a café, cinema,
hairdressing salon, therapy room, a wellness suite, winter and roof garden and a library.


Lewisham mayor wants to protect heritage buildings

Mayor of Lewisham Damian Egan has urged the government to give local authorities greater powers to protect local heritage buildings.

Thirteen national and local amenity societies echoed Egan’s call.

They have written to the housing secretary to call for national planning legislation to be amended so that it allows local authorities to protect their heritage buildings and assets of community value from developers.

Lewisham is home to more than 500 locally listed buildings, ranging from Victorian public houses to traditional shopfronts, but Egan is concerned that the
council’s ability to protect them from developers is limited by national planning legislation.

Egan said a loophole in national planning legislation means that local authorities’ ability to protect it from developers who are more interested in making a profit is limited.

“There have been a number of cases in the borough where we have lost locally significant buildings to developers because they were acting within the law. This is a challenge faced by other local authorities and communities across the country, which is why the government must give us greater powers to hold developers to account.”


Sidmouth building to be converted

East Devon District Council has approved Rockfish’s planning application for the Drill Hall building on Sidmouth seafront.

The legal agreement for the sale of the property to Rockfish, which was conditional upon Rockfish securing planning permission, can be concluded. This means Rockfish will take on the building from the council.

As landowner of the former Drill Hall, the council has been working with Rockfish, its preferred developer for the site, since March 2019, when the sale was agreed, following a meeting of its cabinet.

Rockfish submitted a planning application in August 2019. The firm will refurbish the building and convert it into a restaurant.


Contractor appointed for next phase of Thamesmead development

Peabody has appointed contractor Durkan to build the next phase in the regeneration of South Thamesmead.

This would create 404 homes built around a public square overlooking Southmere Lake.

The homes will be for rent, shared ownership and private sale, more than 50 per cent of which will be affordable. Priority will be given to existing local residents.

Durkan is currently building the first phase of Peabody’s Southmere Village regeneration, which comprises 130 new homes around a lakeside square. It is due to be completed by the end of autumn 2021.


Plans submitted for later-living community

Guild Living has submitted plans to Epsom and Ewell Borough Council to redevelop unused NHS buildings into a later-living scheme.

The project will include 300 homes designed with the help of academics to enable older people to live independently using the latest technology, alongside places for families to stay when visiting.

The scheme also includes ‘publicly accessible’ facilities – such as a wellness and fitness centre, restaurants, bars and GP consultation rooms.

Guild Living is Legal & General's urban later-living housing business.


Government urged not to cap climate ambition for new homes

The Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) has called on the government not to restrict local ambition when drawing up guidelines for new-build homes.

The appeal was made in its response to government proposals to improve energy efficiency standards in building regulations. The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government set out the proposals in its Future Homes Standard consultation.

The proposals require new-build homes to incorporate low-carbon heating, as well as to increase energy efficiency standards for new homes by 80 per cent based on the previously issued 2013 guidelines.

GMCA noted that the new plans would remove the ability for local or combined authorities to set higher energy efficiency standards for their areas, “restricting their ability to go faster and further in cutting carbon emissions”.

Mayor of Salford Paul Dennett, GMCA lead for housing, homelessness and infrastructure, said that while the proposals “have improved on existing standards”, they stop “short of giving us the freedom to go further”.

“These proposals actually jeopardise our position, where we’ve committed to a target of net zero-carbon buildings by 2028, and carbon-neutrality by 2038 – 12 years sooner than the national target. We can’t future-proof our places by building new homes today that we already know will need to be retrofitted tomorrow to meet our targets, especially as our analysis already tells us that we need to retrofit 61,000 homes per year in Greater Manchester if we’re to meet our 2038 carbon-neutrality aspirations.”


500 homes approved in Stoke

The City of Stoke-on-Trent Council has approved plans for a 500-home development in Hanford.

Stoke-based developer Oak-Ngate will deliver the homes on a 161-acre site off New Inn Lane.

The scheme will contribute to the City of Stoke-on-Trent City Council and Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council’s proposed joint local plan to deliver 27,800 new homes by 2033.

Full planning permission has been given to the first phase of 29 homes, including a mix of four and five-bedroom family homes. Outline permission has been granted for 471 dwellings, a new primary school, a health centre, highways improvement works and open space.

Image credit | Hallmark Care Homes