`

Plans approved to turn former Hartlepool care home into 11 apartments

editorial image

The green light has been given to proposals to convert a former care home into 11 apartments.

Plans were submitted earlier this year to convert the former 23-bedroomed Four Winds Residential Home in Hartlepool into 11 self-contained apartments.

The  care home in Elwick Road closed in December 2015 when its parent group Four Winds Care Ltd went out of business.

Owner Matt Matharu was jailed for eight months in February that year for failing to protect dementia sufferer Norah Elliott, 90, who climbed out of a bedroom window of Parkview care home in Seaton Carew and fell to her death.

He was found guilty of two breaches under the Health and Safety at Work Act following a trial at Teesside Crown Court and also ordered to pay the prosecution’s £70,213 costs.

The proposals to convert the former Four Winds site, submitted by Mr J Borthwick, have now been approved by council planning bosses.

A decision report said: “The proposed development would see a currently vacant building brought back into viable use in a broadly similar residential use that would be appropriate in a residential area such as this.

“The development would not be detrimental to the special character of the conservation area or the building itself, which is locally listed, nor would the development detract from the amenity of neighbouring occupants.”

The designs detail how a new pitched roof will be built over a single-storey extension, with a detached garage to be knocked down, a single storey house constructed and a total of 15 parking spaces available.

The developer intends to convert the building into six one-bedroomed apartments, four with two bedrooms and one three bedroom property, which would be sold or let.

Planning agent Phil Skinner, of CAD Design & Build Services , acting on behalf of the applicant, previously said the loft of the main building has been developed to increase the number of apartments to make this development financially viable.

He added none of the alterations will contribute to additional noise or disturbance to the neighbouring properties.

No objections were received to the plans however concerns were raised by Hartlepool Civic Society and Park Residents Association over traffic and highways safety with the access to Elwick Road brought by 11 apartments.

However the council’s Traffic and Transport department assessed the access arrangements and considered them to be acceptable in terms of highway safety.