After a successful planning appeal, Churchill Retirement Living has been granted planning permission to build 31 brand new retirement apartments in the centre of Fleet. Regenerating the former Police Station site on Crookham Road, the new development will bring a thriving new community to the heart of town, contributing around £1.2m to the local economy and supporting over 50 jobs during and after construction.
In the appeal decision notice, the Government’s Planning Inspector Harold Stephens concluded that the development would bring “a number of benefits” which he said would “weigh heavily in favour of the appeal scheme especially given the critical need for housing for older people as identified at national level in the NPPF and NPPG and at local level in HLP32.”
The benefits the decision notice highlighted include:
- Providing much needed housing for older people
- Regenerating previously developed land in a sustainable location
- Making optimum use of the site
- Delivering 31 new homes
- Releasing under-occupied housing stock by allowing older people to downsize
- A payment of £500,000 towards the delivery of affordable housing in the area
- Providing economic benefits by generating jobs in the construction and operational phases of the development, and by residents spending locally
- Enabling older people to enjoy the social benefits of specialist age friendly housing
- Environmental benefits (including energy efficient homes and reduced car use)
The new development will provide attractive, high quality, secure and self-contained accommodation in landscaped grounds. As with all Churchill Retirement Living developments, Owners will enjoy independent living and a sense of community, with a communal Owners’ Lounge, a Guest Suite, a Lodge Manager, and a 24 hour emergency call alarm service.
Stuart Goodwill, Managing Director of Churchill Retirement Living’s in-house Planning consultancy, said: “I’d like to thank everyone who has helped towards achieving this very positive result. There is a compelling overall housing need in Fleet and the surrounding area, especially for older people, and our site is in a perfect location for a new development of this kind. Retirement housing is the most effective way of generating local economic growth, local jobs, and increasing high street spend as we look to recover from the pandemic. It will help improve the health and wellbeing of those who live there, and create a vibrant new community in the heart of Fleet.”