Appeal lodged after controversial plans for a eight-bedroom house of multiple occupation in Hartlepool refused

An appeal has been lodged over a decision to refuse plans for an eight-bedroomed house of multiple occupation in Hartlepool.

Thursday, 26th September 2019, 4:45 pm
Updated Thursday, 26th September 2019, 5:59 pm
Earlier this year Hartlepool Borough Council Planning Committee unanimously turned down the proposals to convert a property in Park Road into an eight bedroom house in multiple occupation (HMO).

Earlier this year Hartlepool Borough Council Planning Committee unanimously turned down the proposals to convert a property in Park Road into an eight bedroom house in multiple occupation (HMO).

HMOs refer to properties such as a house split into separate bedsits, a shared house/flat or a hostel.

In total 17 objections were raised to the proposals submitted by applicant Saeed Khalid, raising issues such as traffic, parking and crime concerns.

The appeal related to proposals to convert a property in Park Road into an eight bedroom house in multiple occupation (HMO).

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However an appeal has now been lodged to the national Planning Inspectorate by the applicant over the decision to refuse the development planning permission in a bid to get the ruling overturned.

The Planning Inspectorate is a Government agency which deals with planning appeals after a decision has been made by local authorities.

Council planning officer Daniel James explained the planning committee refused the application on four grounds.

These were a lack of car parking impacting highway and pedestrian safety, fears it would lead to a rise in crime, a detrimental impact on the character of the area, and unacceptable level of noise and disturbance.

Planning documents by ASP Associates, on behalf of applicant Saeed Khalid when the plans were submitted, said proposals would ‘enhance the area’ and could create ‘up to 40 jobs in refurbishing the site’.

It said: “This property has fallen slightly in a state of disrepair, but our proposals would be a new lease of life for the property providing a worthwhile facility and protect the valuable amenities of the area.

“It is our opinion that the development will provide a good quality HMO residential accommodation.”

Burn Valley ward Councillors Ged Hall, Dave Hunter and John Lauderdale all endorsed concerns raised by residents and objected to the plans, speaking out at the planning meeting in May when the decision was made.

Coun Hunter said: “There is no evidence to suggest anywhere that a HMO or similar will enhance the area, but there is massive evidence to suggest that it brings down prices of property and causes issues for residents.

“In terms of it creating 40 jobs, that is very unlikely, the owner is very vague on what type of residents will use the property, and that is a concern for me.”

Coun Lauderdale said: “Park Road, I would describe, as one of the most prestigious link roads in the town, East to West.

“The moment these detrimental behaviours creep in and become visible we are going to be a laughing stock having made the decision which allowed it to happen.”