City of Winchester Trust
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Planning Appraisal Group - TrustNews Mar 18

First a follow up on a matter mentioned in my report last December. I am pleased to say that a compromise solution has been worked out between City officers and Turtle Bay (developers for the site at the corner of Jewry Street and St Georges Street). There will be no permanent decking and a smaller seating area than originally proposed. This will be on Jewry Street and enclosed by removable fabric barriers.

As you will have seen from the Report in the Hampshire Chronicle, the new Peter Symonds Arts Faculty building has finally been approved, to the dismay of some local residents. The Trust had not objected to this, feeling that it was a high quality building and that, given the lack of an alternative site, which we would have preferred but which would not have received planning permission, the College had done all that it could to minimise impact on residents. It was felt to be important that the College should, as a result, be able to redevelop buildings on the central campus that would no longer be used by the Arts.

Plans for development at 15 Chilbolton Avenue were approved even though in the Trustís view the proposal was a step backward from the less dense proposal previously approved (15/02884/FUL). Appeal by objectors to the Chilbolton Avenue Local Area Design Statement (CALADS), adopted in 2006, was largely dismissed on the grounds that the document does not fully reflect the change in character of Chilbolton Avenue that is the result of the many new developments, and precedents set by the planning inspectorate as the result of appeals.

One major application we have recently reviewed was for the development by St John's Charity at their Colebrook and Chesil Street sites which will result in a total of 31 mostly new, town centre, affordable residential alms house apartments. The Trust had a presentation on this scheme before it was submitted and those attending were impressed by the amount of forward planning and attention to detail that had been undertaken. The application for the Chesil Street site includes a proposal for private foot bridge across the river. The Trust has expressed the view that if this could be made accessible to a wider public, it would be a significant added advantage. Although we understand the many problems involved in building and providing public access to a bridge across the river, it is felt that such a crossing should be kept under consideration by WCC for use by the occupants of the Extra Care facility in Chesil Street.

Another application featured in the Hampshire Chronicle (before we had chance to look at it) was for a proposed 62 bedroom hotel above what was the Next store at 9-11 High Street. The Trust is not opposed in principle to redevelopment of this site as a budget hotel, with 3 ground floor retail units. We also thought acceptable to build a hotel without additional parking, given the city centre location. We did however feel that while the proposed High Street frontage was acceptable if rather unexciting, the proposed Market Street elevation, which includes the main hotel entrance, represented a missed opportunity to make a more significant and imaginative proposal to improve the character and appearance of the street.

Mary Tiles



John Stott retires from PAG panel duties

As the person who in the 1990s inveigled John into becoming a panel member on the Development Control Committee (as PAG was then known), l want to thank him personally for the unstinting duty and support to say nothing of the invariably good company - he has given us all over the past 20 years and more. Unfortunately my records of the early years no longer exist, so it's not possible to say exactly when he joined us, but l know it was very near the beginning of setting up the weekly panels.

Thank you, John, for all you have done for us - enjoy your retirement!

Shione Carden