By Craig Robinson
Thursday, February 21, 2013
A PROPOSAL to demolish a former depot and build a 44-bedroom care home could soon be approved.
Suffolk Coastal District Council will discuss the plans for Bredfield Road, in Melton, near Woodbridge, on Tuesday. Angel Care Plc is seeking permission to develop the site, which comprises the former Anglian Water depot and a residential property. Bosses are hoping to build a 44-bedroom care home for people requiring specialist nursing and dementia care. It would also include ancillary accommodation along with staff offices, kitchen, laundry, outdoor space and 18 parking spaces. All rooms have en-suite facilities and each floor will include a lounge, sitting rooms and dining rooms. The application is a revised scheme to one that has previously been refused, while a subsequent appeal was also dismissed by the planning inspector.
The report to be considered by the South Area Development Control Sub-committee recommends approval - so long as certain conditions are met. However there have been 15 letters of objection to the plans, with both Melton Parish Council and Woodbridge Town Council raising concerns.
It is felt the proposed scheme would cause ”unacceptable harm” to the character and appearance of the area and would be out of keeping with the existing street scene. Fears have also been raised about the lack of car parking spaces - especially for visitors - with concerns over parking on Bredfield Road adding to existing traffic problems. The impact on neighbouring properties has been highlighted, while it is also thought there has been badger activity on the site.
The report says the revised proposal overcomes the previous reasons for refusal and it is therefore recommended for approval.
It says the principle of a care home is acceptable and that alterations to reduce the eastern side of the proposed building mean it would not be out of keeping with the character of the area or impose on neighbouring properties. However, along with other controlling conditions, officers have called for further survey work regarding badger activity and improvements to ensure the privacy of a nearby property.
John Montgomerie, director with planning consultants Tanner and Tilley, who have been handling the application for Angel Care Plc, said those requests had now been met.
He said they had scaled down the size of the building to bring it in line with neighbouring properties - particularly those close to Godfrey’s Wood. “We feel we have done sufficient to tick all the boxes as far as the inspector was concerned,” he said. “We have looked very carefully at it to ensure the amenity of nearby residents is protected.”