St Leonards flats plan given green light amid residents’ objections

John Humphries, Vivienne Fox and William Third, of the Tower Road Protest Group
John Humphries, Vivienne Fox and William Third, of the Tower Road Protest Group

Developers have been given the go-ahead to build flats on a triangle of land in St Leonards, despite attracting widespread opposition.

The Magdalen and Lasher charity applied to build 13 apartments on land at the junction of St Peter’s Road, Cornfield Terrace and Tower Road.

But the proposals sparked opposition from residents, with scores of people signing a petition.

A similar proposal was submitted to the borough council in November 2015, which also attracted objection.

Lead petitioner, William Third, said: “The applicant has made no attempt to help the two businesses on-site find alternative accommodation, for what would essentially be a forced eviction.

“We have submitted ample photographic evidence of traffic and parking chaos at school peak times. It’s also why hundreds made their objection known via our petitions and letters.

“Insufficient attention has been paid to road safety considerations around the school and the increase in air pollution caused by extra cars.

“The current application is certain to decrease road safety adding more vehicles, pollution and parking stress in a location already at bursting point.”

Mr Third, John Humphries and Vivienne Fox set up the Tower Road Protest Group in 2015 to fight development of the site. He added: “It defies common sense that 13 extra flats won’t have a negative result in this already chronically stressed and overcrowded area.”

Jacob Chadwick, project architect, speaking on behalf of the developers, said: “We have met with residents and reassessed the scheme as a whole, with several redesigns and lowering the height of the building. We believe we have achieved a design that will be seen as a positive contribution to the community.”

The council’s planning committee granted permission at their meeting yesterday (Wednesday, May 24).

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