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PLANNING COMMITTE: Proposal for five new flats

PLANNING COMMITTE: Proposal for five new flats

Oldfield Drive in Heswall, Wirral, Image: Google Street View

A block of flats will be built in one part of Wirral, despite fears it could harm the character of the area.

Last night’s meeting of Wirral Council’s planning committee approved a proposal for five flats on Oldfield Drive in Heswall, 15 months after another plan for the same site had been thrown out.

In April 2020 a plan for six apartments, which was later revised down to five, was dismissed. Planners said the design and size of the development would be detrimental to the local area.

The applicant also failed to give assurances that no further trees would be removed from the site.

The new proposal also attracted objections, with 36 people writing to Wirral Council and arguing once again that the building was out of proportion and out of character with the area.

However, there were also 10 letters in support of the plan, which argued it was an improvement on the previous application.

A council planning officer agreed with this claim, telling last night’s meeting that this plan reduced the development in bulk and scale compared to last year’s blocked plan.

The part three storey, part two storey block was also reduced in height, from 12.8 metres to 10.8 metres, compared to the previous proposal.

Labour councillor Paul Stuart eased a further concern of objectors who complained the plan was infringing on greenbelt space.

It was confirmed that the site was actually classed as a primary residential area.

Fellow Labour member Steve Foulkes said helping to improve proposals such as this one was “one of the arts of planning” and that this application was better than the previous one.

Cllr Foulkes noted the developer’s commitment to protect trees at the site and said the committee should take some credit for this improved proposal.

The Claughton councillor added that this plan would help to reduce housing pressures in the borough, even if it was only by the amount of five flats.

 

Words: George Morgan, Local Democracy Reporter


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