This is the third of a series of regular bi-monthly updates on planning and development in the Copers Cope area. Our aim is to provide you with a concise and informative snapshot of recent planning applications, decisions and appeals.
Major Residential Development on Worsley Bridge Road
A large-scale residential development is planned on Station Approach near to Lower Sydenham Railway Station at the northern end of Worsley Bridge Road. The site, presently occupied by Footsies Social Club and playing fields, is on a wedge of open land situated between the New Beckenham / Lower Sydenham rail line and the Pool River, and is next to the old Dylon site where 220 flats are under currently construction.
In February last year an application (15/00701/FULL1) was made to demolish the existing single-storey buildings on the edge of the Footsies site and construct a building of varying height, from eight to twelve storeys, to provide 296 residential units, a new estate road, parking and cycling spaces and landscaping of land to be accessible by the public. The scheme comprises of 148No. one-bedroom, 135No. two-bedroom and 13No. three-bedroom flats.
In September last year the application was refused and it is now the subject of an appeal. The appeal hearing was held over several days starting on 24th May and the decision is expected in the next few weeks.
Following the refusal of this scheme, the developer submitted a second application (15/04759/FULL1) in November last year for a slightly smaller scheme comprising of a building of eight and nine storeys containing 253 residential units, estate road, parking and landscaping. This application, too, is now subject of an appeal.
Royce House, 56a Copers Cope Road 15/02068/OUT
An outline planning application made last year to demolish the existing houses at 56A and 56B and replace them with five, three-storey, four-bedroom houses was refused permission on the grounds that it constituted an over-development of the site. Recently, the applicant’s appeal against the decision was dismissed. The developer is presently working on an alternative scheme.
Land behind 56a Foxgrove Road 15/05329
An application made in last December for a 3-storey block of flats on land presently occupied by garages behind 56A Foxgrove Road has been refused planning permission. The proposal was for 6No. two-bedroom and 3No. three-bedroom flats, plus parking. The plans indicate up to 16 trees being removed and the footprint of the new building extending right up to the root-protection zones of the the few mature trees being retained. The scheme was considered to constitute a cramped over development of the site, out of character and unsympathetic to the spatial qualities of surrounding development. The scale and siting of the building would also have had adverse impact upon existing trees both within and outside the site which contribute significantly to the visual amenities of the area.
14 Southend Road 16/00267/FULL1
An application to convert the house at 14 Southend Road to seven flats, involving a four-storey side and rear extension to the existing house to create 2No. one-bedroom and 5No. two-bedroom apartments was refused in April. The house is situated in the Southend Road Conservation Area and was built in the late 1840s
1A Wickham Road, Peach Design Printers 15/05100/FULL2
A second application for a change of use to the three-storey building from a printer’s office to a House of Multiple Occupation has been approved by the council and building work has now started. The building will provide seven bedrooms (four of which have en-suite bathrooms) and shared dining and bathroom facilities. The first application for eight bedrooms was refused on the grounds of below-standard provision.
Nat West Sports Ground, Copers Cope Road 15/04801/FULL1
An application for a hand car-wash business on Copers Cope Road, situated on the strip of land between the Goals all-weather football pitches and the road, has been refused consent. At the time of writing, reasons for the decision had not been published.
Beck House, 36A Copers Cope Road 16/02136/FULL1
An application has been submitted for the construction of a new, four-storey rear extension and an additional storey on top of the existing block of flats to create an additional 8No. two-bedroom and 1No. three-bedroom flats in connection with the existing 4No. two-bedroom and 1No. three bedroom flats which will be remodelled.
87A Bromley Road 16/02120/FULL1
An application has been made to demolish the existing two-storey house situated on the triangular plot of land between Bromley Road and Albermarle Road, close to Bishop Challoner School, and replace it with a part-three, part-four-storey block comprising 9No. two-bedroom flats.
Conifer House, 44 Southend Road 16/02179/FULL1
This empty, three-storey block of flats on Southend Road, opposite the Stumps Hill Lane bus stop, is the subject of an application to build an additional storey plus four-storey front and rear extensions to create 8No. flats in addition to the 10No. existing. The new additions would comprise 1No. one-bedroom, 4No. two-bedroom and 3No. three-bedroom flats. The existing 2No. one-bedroom, 6No. two-bedroom and 2No. three-bedroom flats would be remodelled.
213 Kings Hall Road 15/04458/OUT
Last year, two outline planning applications were made to develop the land to the rear of 213 Kings Hall Road including part of the side garden of 215. The initial proposal was for 5No. detached four/five-bedroom houses and gardens. This was refused by the Council on the grounds of overdevelopment of the site. Later in the year, a second application was made reducing the number of houses to 3No. however this was subsequently refused also, for the same reason. The applicant has since lodged an appeal against the latest decision.
3 Beckenham Road (above Barclays Bank) 16/02218/FULL1
In spring 2013, consent was granted for a scheme (13/00407) to build two additional floors for residential use on top of the two-storey Barclays Bank building opposite the cinema. The consent expired on 11th April this year and the applicant has since submitted another application for a three-storey addition comprising of 2No. one-bedroom and 6No. two-bedroom flats, and a large, three-bedroom penthouse on the fifth floor.
CHANGE OF USE FROM COMMERCIAL TO RESIDENTIAL
Three years ago, the Government relaxed the planning laws to make it very easy to convert office premises to residential use. Over this period, the majority of office space on Beckenham High Street, much of which was fully-let and in demand, has been given approval to be converted to flats.
The largest of these include St Brides’s House, now practically complete, Marqueen House, Ironstone House and Provident House on Burrell Row, and Kelsey House at Thornton’s Corner (recently subject of a second application, see above). As a result, many thousands of square feet of purpose-built office space has been lost and cannot be reclaimed.
Burnhill House, 50 Burnhill Road 16/02466/RESPA
One of the last remaining office buildings, 50 Burnhill Road, was also the subject of an application to convert it to flats last year. The council refused to grant consent, on the grounds that the proposal had inadequate provision for car parking, and would cause problems with highway safety on such a narrow section of the road. The subsequent appeal by the applicant appeal was dismissed earlier this year, however a new application, for the same scheme, has just been submitted with a legal agreement that the flats are to be ‘car-free’ dwellings. It will be interesting to know if this kind of agreement has worked in reality elsewhere, particularly as Bromley has the the third highest number of car owners out of all the boroughs of Greater London.
Kelsey House, 77 High Street 16/02649/RESPA
Prior approval was granted last summer for the four storeys of office space above the Kelsey House Bar & Kitchen to be converted to sixteen flats, comprising of 8No. one-bedroom and 8No two-bedroom (4 person) flats. A new application has recently been submitted to increase the number of flats to twenty, comprising of 8No. one-bedroom and 12No. two-bedroom (3 person) flats.