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Eight-bed Avenham property plan triggers objections

Posted on - 1st February, 2023 - 12:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Avenham, City Centre, Housing, Politics, Preston City Centre, Preston Council, Preston News, Redevelopment, Winckley Square
Site Location Plan Pic: A&T Architectural Design Ltd
Site Location Plan Pic: A&T Architectural Design Ltd

Multiple objections have been raised over plans to change use of one residential property in 38 Great Avenham Street, to an eight-bed house in multiple occupancy.

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A meeting will take place before the Planning Committee on Thursday 2 February, to discuss concerns brought by councillors, the general public and local residents for the proposed change of the vacant two-storey grade II listed building.

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The proposal aims to provide high-quality living facilities for young and working professionals, yet there are fears over an increase in crime and anti-social behaviour and noise nuisance to neighbouring residents due to possible overcrowding of the property. Reasons for this is because several existing HMOs on the street are causing ‘disturbance’.

As the site is located east of Avenham Park within the Avenham Conservation Area, concerns have also been raised that the proposed works will have a negative impact on the street scene and area, due to more waste being produced and bins left out.

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A detailed report to Preston City Council’s Planning Committee reveals Housing Standards and County Highways have no objections against the plans.

Councillor Salim Desai (City Centre Ward) made representations objecting to the proposed change of use, which can be summarised as follows:

  • Impact on existing on-street parking provision;
  • Over occupation of the property as a result of the proposed change of use, which will increase the amount of waste produced;
  • Bins left out, resulting in street looking a mess; and
  • There are already several of these kinds of properties on the street causing
  • disturbance to the majority of the residents and
  • Use attracts criminal activity and anti-social behaviour.

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Neighbours say occupational limits exceeded due to partners moving in Pic: Google
Neighbours say occupational limits will exceed due to partners moving in Pic: Google

The Council received six objections from neighbouring properties and the public, some of which are summarised below:

  • Impact on the character of the residential area;
  • Impact on the character of the Avenham Conservation Area;
  • High number of former single dwellings divided into individual units and HMOs in the surrounding area;
  • Bins left out, no overall responsibility for the overall site;
  • Impact on existing parking;
  • Occupational limits exceeded due to partners moving in;
  • The proposal for eight bedrooms is considered excessive, leading to 16 people living in the property. How is occupancy to be restricted and controlled;
  • Use attracts criminal activity and anti-social behaviour;
  • Any bins would have to be stored in non-accessible rear yard. Preston are encouraging residents in this street to store their bins off-street to improve visual amenity in conservation area;

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The report also considers that the plans will not have a negative affect on the heritage importance of the building: “The proposal would see the change of use of an existing residential property with a net increase of four bedrooms. It is acknowledged that multiple objections have been received which cite concern over the noise that would be produced via the proposed use, however, the noise generated from the household would be unlikely to lead to such a level of noise generation that would warrant a refusal due to how the property would remain in residential use.

“Housing Standards have been consulted and do not object to the proposal or raise concerns. Housing Standards have requested that a site visit take place, prior to occupation, in the event of an approval and an informative will be attached notifying the applicant of this.

“The proposed change of use does not include any extension or alterations to the fabric of the building. As such, this would not increase the level of overlooking of neighbouring properties which back onto the rear yard of the application site, or those either side of the application site.

“It is considered that the proposal would have no adverse impact on neighbouring residential amenity.”

To read the full report visit the Preston City Council website.

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