'Noise and disturbance' fears over new Hartlepool HMO plan

Concerns have been raised over plans for a new eight-person house in multiple occupation (HMO).

Tuesday, 12th October 2021, 9:52 am
Number 17 Hutton Avenue, in Hartlepool, could be transformed into a house in multiple occupation for eight people.

Proposals have been submitted to Hartlepool Borough Council planning department to convert 17 Hutton Avenue into an eight-bedroom HMO.

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

Submitted by Teesside Property Investments, the plans note the residential property is currently vacant and the work would involve just a few minimal material alterations to the building.

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Hartlepool borough councillor Jonathan Brash has opposed the plan.

A heritage statement, on behalf of the applicant, said: “Each proposed room will include en-suite facilities but will rely on shared dining, lounge and utility facilities on the ground floor for all occupants’ use.

“The property has been solely used for residential purposes since its construction.

“The proposals should not have any effect whatsoever on the architectural character of this period dwelling.”

However, a response from Cllr Jonathan Brash, who represents the Burn Valley ward where the site is located, said he objects in the “strongest possible terms” to the proposals.

He added the HMO would have a “severely detrimental impact on the quality of life” for many in the area and there are a number of reasons why the plans should be refused.

The Labour councillor said: “Residents have contacted me to express their real and well founded fears that granting such an application will do damage to their local community.

“This area already suffers significant parking and other associated traffic problems and an HMO will significantly exacerbate these.

“There is clear potential for ‘noise and disturbance’, which local residents should not be expected to suffer and would highlight that a ‘fear of crime and antisocial behaviour’, which is very evident here, is a material planning consideration.”

He added there have been a number of road traffic accidents in the area in recent months, with Hutton Avenue added to the council’s waiting list for safety measures to be put in.

Planning documents state the property was built in the late 19th Century, and is located in the Grange Conservation Area.

The eight bedrooms would be split across three floors at the property, with two each on the ground and second floors, and four on the first floor.

A decision is expected to be made on the proposals next month.

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