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Planners reject plans for last pub on a Winchester estate
A MAJOR development in Stanmore was ditched following “a badly flawed application”.
Developers wanted to demolish the New Queens Head on Stanmore Lane and build 14 new homes and a convenience store.
City planners rejected the plans amid bizarre scenes at the Guildhall.
The planning committee meeting was briefly interrupted by an interjection from the developer.
Cllr Barry Lipscomb then took the unusual step of requesting that chairman Ernest Jeffs permit council officers to step outside the room to clarify the point being made by the developer.
Controversy centred on whether the site was large enough to trigger the council’s policy that 40 per cent of the new homes should be ‘affordable’.
Plans submitted by Bargate Homes consisted of only 11 per cent affordable housing. The confusion had arisen because some of the land within the proposed site was considered ‘undevelopable’.
Upon returning to the room, Simon Finch, head of planning management, said: “As it stands, this triggers the threshold for affordable housing.”
Officers recommended the proposals be rejected on the grounds they did not provide an appropriate mix of affordable housing and that a better development was possible. There were particular concerns that the homes were not sympathetic to Stanmore’s townscape.
Stanmore Cllr Jamie Scott was one of only two members to vote in favour of the plans. He said: “The feeling in Stanmore is that they’ve lost a real pub. But we need to move on as a community. I think common sense has to prevail here.”
The committee voted overwhelmingly to reject the application.
The decision spells the end of Bargate Homes’ involvement with the site, as their option-to-purchase on the land will soon expire.
Managing director Angus Cook said: “We’re saddened by this position but I want to thank the members of the council for their thoughtful consideration.”