Category Archives: Planning

PLANNING and DEVELOPMENT Bulletin No.5, 30 August 2017

This is the latest in our series of updates on planning matters in and around the Copers Cope Area.  It’s been a while since our last bulletin, so this is quite a long one.

If you feel strongly about any of the planning applications below that are currently being considered by London Borough of Bromley, you can leave your comments by clicking the links provided, then clicking on the comments tab.  Don’t forget to give your name and address, otherwise your views may not be considered.

 

Two More Major Residential Development Applications:

Maybrey Business Park, Worsley Bridge Road 16/05897/FULL

Planning approval was refused in May for a large residential development on the Maybrey Business Park site, near to Lower Sydenham Station.

The site, next to the old Dylon site, itself undergoing redevelopment, is currently occupied by two light industrial buildings dating from the 1930s, comprising nine business units.  Maybrey Works, which sits next to an area of Metropolitan Open Land occupied by sports pitches and the Pool River, is part of the Lower Sydenham Business Area and has been allocated as a Locally Significant Industrial Site in LBB’s emerging Local Plan.

The proposal, by Bellway Homes, involved the demolition of the existing structures and the construction of five new residential blocks of between five and nine storeys in height providing 159No dwellings and 1243 sq m of commercial space at ground floor level, plus gym for residents, car parking, landscaping and infrastructure works.  The residential portion of the development comprised 75No one-bed, 56No two-bed (4 person), 6No three-bed (4 person) and 22No three-bed (5 person) flats.

The reasons for refusal were: the site is located within a Business Area in the Council’s emerging Unitary Development Plan; the height and scale of the development would be harmful to the landscape and would have an unacceptable visual impact on its surroundings; the scheme was considered a cramped over-development of the site; and the development would have an unacceptable impact on local transport infrastructure.

The developer has recently appealed against the decision.

 

Footsies Social Club, Lower Sydenham 17/00170/FULL1

Also refused recently was an application for another large-scale residential development, on land adjacent.

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 currently under construction.

A previous scheme that proposed a number of residential blocks ranging in height from eight to nine storeys in height providing 253No dwellings was dismissed at appeal last year.

This latest application proposed the demolition of the existing buildings and redevelopment of the site, constructing a four to eight-storey (plus basement) development of 229No dwellings comprising 118No one-bedroom, 103No two-bedroom and 8No three-bedroom flats, together with the construction of an estate road, car and cycle parking and the landscaping of the east part of the site to form open space accessible to the public.

Reasons given for refusal were that: The site is within an area of Metropolitan Open Land and as such, the kind of development proposed was inappropriate; the site was considered inappropriate for tall buildings as they would have an adverse impact on the landscape and this outweighed the proposed benefit of opening up public access to the area of MOL; the applicant failed to show relevant special circumstances applicable to the scheme; the proposal did not provide sufficient affordable housing;

The applicant has subsequently appealed against the decision.  The appeal will be heard over four days from 30th January 2018.

 

Crusader Hall, High Street (behind shops from Cancer Research to Card Factory) 17/00029/FULL1

An application to demolish the existing Crusader Hall Clubhouse, situated behind shops on the High Street and accessed via Legion Alley, and redevelop the site to provide 2No one-bedroom and 7No two-bedroom flats, has been withdrawn.

 

3 Beckenham Road (above Barclays Bank) 16/02218/FULL1

An application in May last year for a three-storey addition, including a large, three-bedroom penthouse on the fifth floor, has been dismissed at appeal.

A proposal to build two additional floors for residential use on top of the two-storey Barclays Bank building opposite the cinema was approved in December last year.  The scheme comprises 2No. one-bedroom and 6No. two-bedroom flats.

 

Beckenham Methodist Church, Bromley Road 16/05699/FULL1

An application for a scheme to redevelop the church was granted planning approval in April.

The principle element of the scheme is a glazed atrium on the west wall of the church to provide a new entrance, community cafe, social space, creche and cloakrooms.  Upgrades to the church building, such as replacing the heating system, lights, flooring and seating, are also planned.  The scheme requires the demolition of the scout huts to the side of the main church building.  The church estimates the work will cost £800,000.

For more information, visit the church to view the plans on display and pick up a leaflet.

 

84 Albermarle Road 16/05788/FULL1

Planning permission was granted in March to demolish the existing large house on the site and replace it with a three-storey block of flats, comprising 6No one-bedroom and 3No two-bedroom dwellings, plus parking and landscaping.

 

13 Lea Road 16/05794/FULL1

A proposal to construct a new end-of-terrace house next to No13 Lea Road, which is located within the High Street Conservation Area, together with roof alterations to No13 itself, was refused permission in April.

Reasons given for refusal were that the proposal: represented a cramped overdevelopment of the site which would appear out of character with the streetscene and had inadequate spatial provision; would form a contrived design which would not respect or complement the form of the neighbouring property and fail to preserve and enhance the surrounding properties on Lea Road and wider Beckenham Town Centre Conservation Area; would result in a loss of existing on-site car parking provision.

 

NatWest Sports Ground, Copers Cope Road 16/05845/FULL1

Following a failed application last year to provide a hand carwash facility on the site, which sits next to Gambados, another application proposing the same use was similarly refused in May.

Reasons given for refusal were that the proposal would result in an inappropriate development on an area of Metropolitan Open Land (MOL); the acoustic report submitted was deficient in a number of areas; the proposal would cause noise and disturbance to the local area.

 

61 The Avenue 17/01955/FULL1

Another planning application is currently being considered by the Council proposing the demolition of the existing house, which is located in the Downs Hill Conservation Area, and development of two blocks comprising 3No two-bedroom flats on the site.

This is the fourth application in as many years and comes, oddly, after a successful application last year to develop the site to provide two new family houses, which in our opinion is more suited to the particular location than flats.

The Council refused the application earlier this month on the grounds that the proposal by reason of the size, height, bulk and massing of the buildings, would result in an overdevelopment of the site and would fail to preserve or enhance the character and appearance of the Downs Hill Conservation Area.

 

10 Copers Cope Road 17/03033

Another retrospective planning application has been made for a basement and ground floor dwelling, that has already been built in the rear garden.  A similar retrospective application was refused last year and LBB had also taken enforcement action.

No 10 is described as a four-storey, end-of-terrace hotel building that has been extensively  refurbished.  In 2015 the owner was granted permission to build a structure in the rear garden to provide additional facilities for the hotel, including a laundry, fitness room, staff room, office, toilets and storage.

The building had since been repurposed to become a three-bedroom dwelling, without permission.  The building had also been found to be larger than the original consent allowed, and included a second lightwell that wasn’t on the consented drawings.

 

56A Foxgrove Road 17/00624/OUT

The Council is currently considering an outline planning application for the demolition of the existing 6No flats and garages and developing a three to four-storey block comprised of 18No flats, with car parking and landscaping.

 

14 Southend Road 17/00664/FULL1

Another application was refused in April for the construction of a three-storey side and rear extension and the conversion of the existing house, which sits in the Southend Conservation Area, to 4No one-bedroom and 1No two-bedroom flats.

The reason given for refusal was that the proposed extension would harm the character of the conservation area due to its prominent siting, height and scale and its relationship to the existing and adjacent buildings.

A similar application was refused last year.

 

45 Beckenham Road 17/02701/FULL1

A planning application has been submitted for the conversion of the semi-detached house to a House of Multiple Occupation (HMO).

8No bedrooms are proposed over the ground, first and second floors, comprising 7No double and 1No singles, providing accommodation for up to 15 people.  Occupants share one kitchen/dining room and several bathrooms.  Only two of the bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms.

 

Carlton Court, 23 Beckenham Road 17/02890/FULL1

A large residential development has been proposed at Carlton Court, a two-storey block of six two-bedroom flats, diagonally opposite the Fire Station, on the corner with Hayne Road.

The planning application proposes the demolition of the existing building and garage block and the construction of a four-storey block of 30No flats comprised of 11No one-bedroom, 18No two-bedroom and 1No three-bedroom flats.

The existing block provides accommodation for up to 24 people, whereas this new proposal will accommodate up to 88 people, however only 15No car parking spaces are provided for future residents.

This is a significantly larger scheme than the one granted planning approval last autumn, which was to add one storey to the existing building, providing 4No additional flats.

 

Chinese Garage, Wickham Road 17/03273/RECON

Planning and Listed Building Consent was granted in December last year for the conversion of this landmark building from a car dealership and garage to 2No ground floor retail units and 2No two-bedroom flats on the first floor.

The drawings submitted with the original application 16/02988/FULL suggested that the two retail units would be occupied by Pets at Home and Majestic Wine.   However this more recent application, for extended operating hours in the morning and evening, makes clear that Tesco now intend to take the lease, instead of Pets at Home.

There has already been much concern among local residents about the effect this proposal may have on the traffic congestion around the area of the roundabout where the building is located, increased noise and pollution, increased frequency of delivery vehicles, and the possible negative effect a supermarket would have on the parade of shops and businesses opposite.

At the time of writing there had been over 600 letters of objection to the proposal.

The official deadline for commenting on the application is 31st August, although your views will still be taken into account after this date if you email the case officer russell.penn@bromley.gov.uk and planning@bromley.gov.uk stating the case reference 17/03273/RECON in the subject line (remember to include your name and address at the end of your email, otherwise your views may not be considered).

 

Eden Park High School, Balmoral Avenue 16/03145/OUT

Outline planning permission was granted in June for a new secondary school on the South Suburban Co-Op Society site in Elmers End.

The controversial scheme provides a new school with eight forms of entry catering for up to 1,680 pupils.  The development comprises 2No two to three-storey teaching buildings totalling 13,500 square metres, plus sports hall, playing fields, multi-use games area, floodlighting, parking and access road.

According to their website, the school is due to open this September with 180 Year 7 pupils in temporary accommodation.

 

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.  Minimum space standards that are required for new-build or conversions do not apply to dwellings converted from offices, so many of these flats can be very cramped.

The largest of these sites include St Brides’s House (now complete), Marqueen House, Ironstone House and Provident House on Burrell Row, Kelsey House at Thornton’s Corner and Burnhill House on Burnhill Road.  As a result, many thousands of square feet of purpose-built office space has been lost and cannot be reclaimed.

 

Here are some of the latest applications for conversion from office to residential  use:

Newbeck Court, 125 Park Road 16/05068/FULL2

An application for the change of use of the offices at Newbeck Court, next to the railway and adjacent to New Beckenham Station, to residential use comprising 2no. two-bedroom  and 1No one-bedroom flats with 3no. car park spaces, has been approved.

 

8-12 Bromley Road (above Chom Chom restaurant) 17/01036/RESPA

A change-of-use application has been approved to convert the two floors of offices over Chom Chom restaurant to flats, comprising 10No one-bedroom dwellings comprising 7No one-bedroom/one-person and 3No one-bedroom/two-person flats.  According to the plans submitted, half of the flats appear to be below minimum space standards, with one of them just 32.2 sq m (347 sq ft).  Last week Chom Chom announce they had closed down.  We wait to see what takes its place.

 

Burnhill House, 50 Burnhill Road (Kelsey Square) 17/03675/FULL1

At the end of July last year Bromley Council granted ‘prior approval’ consent for the last remaining office building in the Beckenham High Street area to be converted into flats.  Burnhill House, situated adjacent to Lidl supermarket, was the subject of an application to convert the offices to 14No one and two-bedroom flats in 2015.  The council initially 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.  An appeal by the applicant was dismissed, however a new application for the same scheme, but accompanied by a blank legal agreement promising the flats to be ‘car-free’ dwellings, was submitted and regrettably the Council capitulated and the application for the conversion of the office space to 14No flats was granted.

CCARA objected strongly against this application as, in our opinion, it provided an extremely poor standard of living accommodation, particularly in terms of space, privacy, noise, natural light and amenity.

Incredibly, earlier this year, the building owner made a fresh application for no less than 24No one-bedroom flats.  There were no drawings to show how ten more flats could be shoe-horned into the limited confines of the building, but thankfully the council refused the application.

This month, yet another application has been submitted, this time proposing an additional 9No new flats ‘bolted-on’ to the second floor and roof and substantial alterations of the existing building.  If granted permission, this would again bring the total number of flats the site to 24 (two existing flats on the first floor being retained and one flat originally proposed on the ground floor being sacrificed for bike and refuse storage) enabling up to 54 people to live there.

No car parking is provided (future residents will apparently not be allowed CPZ parking permits) and this will lead to pressure on nearby roads without parking restrictions.

We regard this latest proposal as an over-development of an already awkward building on a constrained site.  We’ve also noted there will be a marked disparity between the flats in the converted office space, which aren’t required to meet minimum national space standards, and the new flats which are.  Additionally, there is no requirement by the developer to provide affordable homes, as they are proposing nine new units (ten or more, and a proportion have to be ‘affordable’).  There is no requirement for any of the flats in the converted office space to be ‘affordable’.

If you would like to have a closer look and comment on this latest scheme, click on the link above.

 

Applications on the High Street:

 

218 High Street (old Ardec shop) 16/04171

Earlier this year, permission was granted at appeal for the change of use of the old Ardec shop to a restaurant on the ground floor with an extension to the rear (15/02489).

A further application for kitchen extract equipment and drainage proposals was granted consent this month.  Hoardings have since been erected, indicating that work has started inside.

 

210 High Street (old Clark’s shop) 16/04189/CUTA3

An application 16/05191/FULL1 submitted last November for the installation of a kitchen extraction hood external ducting to rear of the property was refused in March this year, on the grounds of insufficient information.

After an application 17/00050/LAPRE was made by the owners to vary and extend the current premises licence at Two-Ten, the establishment had its licence suspended on 26th April for three months.

The decision followed a number of apparent breaches of its existing licence since the restaurant opened in December last year.  The owners have been ordered to address several matters including noise, the sale of alcohol, building regulations, fire regulations, compliance with smoking laws and installation of a cctv system.

At the time of writing, there is currently also an enforcement enquiry underway regarding an alleged unauthorised change to a shop front together with the installation of a unauthorised canopy to the rear of the building.

 

206 High Street (old Chas Norman camera shop) 16/05707/FULL3

A retrospective application has been approved for the use of the first floor as a one-bedroom flat, and for shop front alterations including a roller shutter,new entrance to the flat above and shop window alterations.  The ground floor was  open for several months as an art gallery/shop, without any apparent name, before abruptly closing earlier this month.  We wait to see what takes its place

 

186A High Street (above Oliver Stephens Opticians) 17/00026/FULL1

An application to convert the existing three-bedroom duplex flat above the shop into 1No one-bedroom and 1No two-bedroom flats has been refused as the two dwellings would be lacking in adequate amenities and standard of accommodation for future occupants.

 

162 High Street 17/01568/ADV (old Horts Boutique shop)

The Council has taken enforcement action against Tech Check, the new occupier of the shop unit for changing a shop frontage and installing solid security shutters in a conservation area without planning permission.

The owners submitted a planning application in June, but made the alterations two weeks later, opening the shop at the end of the month.

 

 

12A High Street 17/00911/FULL1 (Coady’s Estate Agent)

Permission was granted in May for the change of use of the estate agents office on the railway bridge to a cafe.  At the time of writing, the cafe had not opened, but the its name, ‘Poached’ is shown on the window.

 

Beeches Court, 115-127 High Street (above Flower Studio) 17/01348/FULL

An application to reconfigure the 4No two-bedroom flats on the first and second floors to 8No one-bedroom flats was granted planning approval in May.

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Beckenham Improvement Work Update 3rd April 2017

Improvement Works Update, Monday 3rd April, courtesy of F M Conway, contractor for the works:

 

Beckenham Improvements work update

Work for the week ahead 

Work on the raised footway between the Nat West and the steps will be completed.

Customers requiring the ATM will have to access this via the steps on the lower section of the High Street.

Works underway outside Kinleigh Estate Agents will be completed by early next week together with the work on the opposite corner adjacent to Beckenham Green. All barriers will be removed at both of these points by early next week.

Work will continue along the section of the High Street between Albemarle Rd and Bromley Rd but will temporarily stop just short of the Church Entrance in preparation for Easter celebrations.

Work to replace the pedestrian refuges at the junction of Rectory Road and High Street will commence as part of the upgrade work, in preparation for resurfacing the road at the end of April.

Work on the lower section of the High Street below the steps next to Coppers will start week beginning 10/4 but residents and retailers affected will be notified in advance to discuss access requirements to the shops and private car park entrances and potential alternative arrangements.

Second week update report

Beckenham Junction works have proceeded in line with expectations. Paving and kerbing work is now almost complete.

The High Street arm of the junction has now been adjusted bringing the approach to the traffic lights back to two lanes, with the traffic light re-sequenced. Traffic queuing has generally been reduced and traffic continues to be able to turn right into Southend Road from Albemarle Road. Work on the Thai Restaurant Corner and around into Rectory Rd has been completed and all barriers have been removed. Work on the raised footway between Coppers Restaurant and the Spa have been completed and the steps reopened.

About the scheme

The scheme is designed to make the town more attractive to visitors and shoppers by day and night. A major objective is to support existing businesses and encourage new businesses to invest in the town centre. The High Street investment improvements will create a more attractive and safer pedestrian environment. Improvements will include new paving and road surfacing, improved and attractive lighting, improved road crossings and bus waiting facilities, better facilities for cyclists and improved amenity spaces including Beckenham Green.

Extensive planning and consultation has been carried out since the scheme was proposed in 2012. The cooperation and input of the Beckenham Business Association and the Copers Cope Resident Association is gratefully acknowledged, with their input key in shaping the nature of the scheme.

Sign up for regular newsletter updates

Businesses and interested residents who want to follow the progress of the work over the next 18 months can sign up for the regular updates that will be sent. Visit www.bromley.gov.uk/beckenhamimprovements to do this where the latest detailed traffic diversions are listed including information about bus routes and a link to TfL’s website www.tfl.gov.uk/BusChanges.

Thank you for your understanding and support

Every effort is being made to minimise disruption and your understanding and support is appreciated in advance if there are unforeseen issues which need to be resolved. If further specific information is needed, please contact Conway’s Helen McConnell who can be contacted, for help and advice. Helen, the Liaison Officer is the scheme contact for businesses and residents. Helen can be contacted on Mobile Tel 07917 518 529 or email Beckenham@fmconway.co.uk if needed.

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Benedict House, Copers Cope Road: Proposal for a Residential Support Centre, February 2017

Two applications are currently being considered by London Borough of Bromley’s planning officers proposing the change of use of Benedict house, a former nursing home, to a Residential Support Centre.

LBB’s Director of Housing has provided a briefing document, below, to answer some of the concerns that have been raised so far:

What is the Proposal?

Benedict House has recently been purchased by developers who are seeking to redevelop the site for high quality apartments. Time is required to prepare for redevelopment meaning that Benedict House is likely to be vacant for up to 2 years.  In the interim the developers have offered the opportunity for the LondonBorough of Bromley to utilise the building for up to 2 years for use as temporary accommodation to help meet its statutory rehousing duties.

Why is the accommodation needed by Bromley for use as temporary accommodation?

The number of households presenting at risk of homelessness has increased steadily in recent years. For the majority, the reason for homelessness is that they are experiencing difficulties in affording the increasing costs of renting or buying a home.  A reduction in new build accommodation, increase in private sector rents and changes within social housing has meant that move on housing options havedecreased and the numbers in temporary accommodation has risen to unprecedented levels. This has meant that to meet the level of housing need the Council has had to utilise costly forms of insecure nightly paid accommodation which frequently falls short of requirements in terms of location and quality.  The use of Benedict House for up to 2 years would provide much needed local temporary accommodation whilst longer term housing solutions are identified.

Who decides which people would be placed into Benedict House?

The Council would retain full control over nominations throughout the periodof use. This means that the Council would decide who is placed into the accommodation and for how long.

Would people be placed from outside of the borough?

No, as the Council controls who is nominated only those households with a local connection with Bromley would be eligible. These would be residents who live and/or have permanent employment within the borough.  Prioirty would be given to those households who currently live, work or have children in schooling near to, or on direct transport links to Copers Cope Road.

What type of People will be placed?

Local people, mainly families or couples, who have become homeless throughno fault of their own and to whom the Council owes a statutory duty to assist in rehousing. A full assessment would be undertaken before any household isnominated and only those households who have been assessed as able to fully maintain a tenancy independently where the need is solely for housing rather than support would be eligible to be placed into Benedict House. The scheme would not be open to those people who are deemed vulnerable requiring intensive support to be able to manage a tenancy because of their vulnerability, such as those with enduring mental health needs. The council has alternative specialist support schemes which provide more intensive support for these people.

Who will manage the schemes?

The scheme would be managed by Omega Mears. They already work with the Council sourcing and managing a number of temporary accommodationunits and have a long track record of successful temporary accommodationand tenancy management. It is proposed that 24 hour on site management is provided. Mears would also provide ongoing advice and support to residentsin partnership with the Council to assist households to secure settled accommodation and ensure that they do not become homeless again. For example helping to access employment for those who may not currently be in full time employment.

Would I be able to contact anyone if I had concerns or queries about the Scheme?

Yes, full contact details of the Mears staff and Council’s housing needs team would be made available to all local residents so that they would be able to make contact should they have any queries or concerns at any point.

What type of tenancies would residents have? Can you guarantee that they would have to leave at the end of the 2 years?

All residents would be signed up to a licence agreement. This is a non-secureagreement meaning that they would not hold any interest in the property or have any rights to remain in the long term. The agreement sets out residents’ responsibilities and the conditions they must meet to be eligible to stay in the accommodation. This includes their conduct and the conduct of any visitors to the scheme. As the agreement is not a ‘protected agreement’ it can be brought to an immediate end should any resident or their visitor breach these rules or the Council require vacant possession. In this way conditions can be actively enforced to ensure that the scheme operate successfully without disturbance or disruption for any other residents in the scheme or local community and can ensure vacant possession at the end of the period of use as temporary accommodation.

To view the applications, and submit your own comments, click on the links below:

16/05442/PLUD

16/05849/FULL1

Remember to include your name and address in any correspondence otherwise your comments will not be registered.

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Residential Support Centre / Hostel proposed on Copers Cope Road, January 2017

Applications have been submitted for proposed change of use of a former nursing home on Copers Cope Road to a Residential Support Centre.

Benedict House, on the corner of Park Road, was in use as a nursing home until last year, when it closed following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission which found it to be inadequate (click this link to read article in the Bromley Times last summer).
Omega Mears, a care service provider, proposes to lease the building from the current owner, Spring Capital Management, with the intention of using it as a ‘residential support centre’ to provide ‘accommodation, care and support services’ for ‘homeless families, vulnerable young adults and emergency housing requirements arising from healthcare needs and other issues’.
Two separate applications have been submitted: the first for a certificate of lawful proposed use (as a residential support centre) ; the second for a temporary change of use from a care home to a residential support centre.  We believe  the purpose of the second application is in case the first one is refused.  Both applications are supported by letters from Bromley Council’s Education, Care & Health Services department.
The letters from LBB EC&HS point to the fact, amongst others, that numbers housed in temporary accommodation has more than doubled in the last five years, hence the increasing requirement for facilities such as this, particularly for parents and children who have become homeless through no fault of their own.
No external alterations are proposed to the building and there is no increase in the number of bedrooms from when it was in use as a nursing home.  There are 41 bedrooms in total: 35 double, 5 single and 1 disabled.  30 bedrooms are ensuite.  Omega Mears have submitted a comprehensive Management Plan and the facility will be supervised 24 hours a day.
You can view both applications in full, including the Council letter and Management Plan, and comment on the proposals by clicking the links below:
CCARA has written to the assigned planning officer and ward councillors requesting  that an informal meeting, or drop-in session, is held by council officers and representatives from the service provider, for residents to gain a clearer understanding of the exact proposals and ask questions in order that an assessment can be made of any areas of concern before the application is considered by the Council’s Planning Committee.

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PLANNING and DEVELOPMENT Bulletin 04 – September 2016

 

This is the latest of our 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.

 

Refusal of a Major Residential Development on Worsley Bridge Road 

The large-scale residential development planned behind the Dylon site, near to Lower Sydenham Railway Station at the northern end of Worsley Bridge Road, has been dismissed at appeal.

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 currently under 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 comprised of 148No. one-bedroom, 135No. two-bedroom and 13No. three-bedroom flats.  In September last year the application was refused and became the subject of an appeal, which was later withdrawn.

A second application, for a slight variant of the above scheme, but with 253 dwellings, had also been lodged by the developer (15/04759/FULL1). This, too, was refused and the applicant subsequently appealed against the decision.

The appeal hearing was finally held over several days in May and the Planning Inspectorate released its decision last month to dismiss it.

The principal reasons for the dismissal are the effect the proposal would have on:

  1. The area of Metropolitan Open Land (MOL) on which it sited;
  2. The effect on the character and appearance of the surrounding area, in terms of the design, scale, density and risk of flooding;
  3. The amenities of occupiers of the future dwellings in terms of natural ventilation, solar gain and noise.

Click here to read the Planning Inspector’s Report

Beck House, 36A Copers Cope Road 16/02136/FULL1

Permission has been granted to construct 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

Consent has also been given 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

Planning permission has been granted to enlarge and refurbish this empty, three-storey block of flats on Southend Road, opposite the Stumps Hill Lane bus stop.  This includes  building an additional storey plus four-storey front and rear extensions to create 8No. flats in addition to the 10No. existing.  The new additions will 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 will also 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.  At the time of writing a date for the appeal hearing had yet to published.

3 Beckenham Road (above Barclays Bank) 16/02218/FULL1

Planning permission has been refused for a scheme involving the addition of three residential storeys on top of the existing, two-storey Barclays Bank building opposite the cinema.

The development comprised of 2No. one-bedroom and 6No. two-bedroom flats on the third and fourth floors, and a large, three-bedroom penthouse on the fifth floor.

The reasons given for refusal were that the proposal would be visually obtrusive, due to its design, scale, bulk and height; would detract from views in and out of the area; and would be detrimental to the character of the adjacent High Street Conservation Area.

20 Crescent Road 16/02752/FULL

An application to demolish a large 1890s Victorian villa house on a prominent corner near Chancery Lane and replace it with flats has fortunately been refused consent.  There was passionate opposition to the application by local residents, the Chancery Lane and Limes Road Residents’ Association and CCARA, with many letters of objection and a petition being sent to the Council.

10 Copers Cope Road 16/02834/FULL

A retrospective planning application for a basement and ground floor dwelling, that has already been built in the rear garden, has been refused permission.

No 10 is described as a four-storey, end-of-terrace hotel building that has been extensively  refurbished.  Last year the owner was granted permission to build a structure in the rear garden to provide additional facilities for the hotel, including a laundry, fitness room, staff room, office, toilets and storage.

The building has since been repurposed to become a three-bedroom dwelling, without permission.  The building has also been found to be larger than the original consent allowed, and includes a second lightwell that wasn’t on the consented drawings.

Enforcement action is now being taken by LBB in addition to the refusal of the retrospective application.

Carlton Court, Beckenham Road 16/03105/FULL

A planning application has been submitted to add another storey to the two-storey flats, situated at the junction with Hayne Road, to provide 2No two-bed and 2No one-bed flats.

 

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 below). As a result, many thousands of square feet of purpose-built office space have been lost and cannot be reclaimed.

Burnhill House, 50 Burnhill Road 16/02466/RESPA

At the end of July Bromley Council granted ‘prior approval’ consent for the last remaining large office building on Beckenham High Street to be converted into flats.

50 Burnhill Road, had been the subject of an application to convert the building, situated adjacent to Lidl supermarket, into flats last year.  The council initially 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.  An appeal by the applicant was dismissed earlier this year, however a new application for the same scheme, but accompanied by a blank legal agreement promising the flats to be ‘car-free’ dwellings, was submitted in May and regrettably the Council capitulated.

CCARA objected strongly against this application as, in our opinion, it provides an extremely poor and cramped standard of living accommodation. Other areas of concern are what appear to be multiple entrances to the development, no provision for refuse storage and an impractical proposal to store 14 bicycles in the Burnhill Road entrance lobby.  It will be interesting to observe whether this ‘car-free’ agreement, implemented by other developers of commercial-to-residential buildings in Beckenham, will work in reality 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 has been refused for an application to convert the four storeys of office space above the Kelsey House Bar & Kitchen to twenty flats, comprising of 8No. one-bedroom and 12No. two-bedroom (3 person) dwellings.  Reasons given for refusal were the lack of an environmental noise assessment and that future occupiers of the dwellings could be negatively affected by noise from the Bar & Kitchen on the ground floor and other neighbouring commercial premises.  The building is also in a medium flood risk zone and no flood risk assessment had been submitted with the application.

Last summer, a prior approval application had been granted for sixteen flats.

The freehold building is currently on the market for £4 million.

171a High Street 16/02021/RESPA

Following refusal earlier this year, Prior Approval has now been granted to convert the commercial space above Beckenham Pharmacy to 1No two-bedroom flat.

9 Kelsey Park Road 16/02126/RESPA

Prior Approval has been given to convert the two floors of office space above Grand Cru Co wine merchants to 1No three-bedroom flat and 1No two-bedroom flat.

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Victorian house on Crescent Road threatened with demolition, July 2016

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An application proposing the demolition of a large Victorian house on the corner of Crescent Road and Limes Road has been submitted for planning consent

Number 20 Crescent Road was built in 1890 and occupies a prominent corner site, at the junction of Limes Road, on the boundary of the Chancery Lane Conservation Area.  It is one of the few remaining large Victorian houses on the road and a very fine example of late-victorian architecture, displaying many details characteristic of the period, for example polychromatic brickwork and stone window arches.

Crescent Road has a predominance of houses rather than flats, which is at odds with the impression given in the application documents; just two plots on the road are occupied by purpose-built blocks of  flats, the rest by houses of varying ages and styles: generally late Victorian and Edwardian detached and semi-detached towards the east and 1920s/30s examples to the west.

The proposed replacement is a ubiquitous building of seven flats which, together with a car park and garages occupying nearly three-quarters of the existing garden, would diminish the character of the area considerably, in our opinion.

CCARA has written to the Council objecting to the proposed demolition and the scheme in general, and there has already been strong opposition from other local groups and residents, including the Chancery Lane & Limes Road Residents Association.

You can view the application in detail and submit your own comments by clicking this link:

https://searchapplications.bromley.gov.uk/onlineapplications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=O8FTZRBTG9G00

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Flats proposed on top of Barclays Bank, Beckenham, June 2016

3 Beckenham Rd Front

Beckenham Road elevation

A recent planning application has been made to build three additional storeys of flats on top of the existing Barclays Bank on Beckenham Road, near to the war memorial.

The application incorporates a scheme for two additional residential storeys that was granted consent more than three years ago, but which expired on 10th April this year, 13/00407/FULL1 , plus a fifth storey penthouse apartment.
(Note: the drawings also indicate an unconnected scheme for the site at 436 Croydon Road, currently a temporary furniture showroom.  This has not been built and the Council are understood to be investigating the current planning status)
CCARA has written to the Council, objecting to the application and expressing the view that the proposal would have a detrimental impact on the surrounding area.  Whilst the Association does not have any major objection to the four-storey scheme previously consented, we consider the newly-proposed fifth storey in the current application an unwelcome addition, for the following reasons:
1. Most buildings in the area are either two or three storeys high, with a few being four storeys.  Allowing a five-storey development would set an undesirable precedent with regard to other sites in the immediate vicinity that hold the potential to be redeveloped in the future.
2. The site is in a sensitive location, right on the edge of the Beckenham High Street Conservation Area and sitting opposite the Grade 2-listed Odeon Cinema and the Post Office, a locally listed building.
3. The design of the building would dominate this important junction in the town and dwarf the adjacent Victorian houses on Beckenham Road.
4. The wave-shaped profile of the penthouse roof results in a fifth storey that would be nearly 5 metres high, further accentuating the visual height of the building.  The elevation drawings suggest the building would be nearly 17 metres high, at its highest point.
5.   No indication appears to be given regarding the materials, colour or finish of the cladding.  The presentation of the drawings seems to suggest a light-coloured render to the third and fourth storeys and a profiled metal roof to the penthouse.  Both materials would be inappropriate, detracting from the importance of the existing key buildings at the junction.
6. Assuming employees at the bank would still permitted to park their cars in the car park at the rear of the building, there would seem to be an inadequate number of parking spaces overall.
If you wish to view the proposal, click on this link, 16/02218/FULL1 , where you can also submit your own comments.

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PLANNING and DEVELOPMENT Bulletin No 03 – June 2016

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.

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PLANNING and DEVELOPMENT Bulletin – March 2016

 

This is the second 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.

Further Major Residential Development on Worsley Bridge Road

Another 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 is due to start on 24th May this year.

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 is currently under consideration by LBB.

2 The Drive, off Beckenham High Street

The Planning Inspectorate last month upheld the Council’s enforcement action with regard to the various partially built extensions to the house, just off the High Street and just outside of the Conservation Area. The Inspectorate also dismissed the three appeals made by the owner and ordered him to pay the costs of the appeals.

The property has had a long planning history. In his report, the Planning Inspector noted that seventeen planning applications had been made over a period of fourteen years. Of these, five had been permitted though often not implemented in accordance with the consent. Of the refusals he had received, the owner had made five appeals, in addition to the three that were the subject of this latest inquiry.

Full details of the decision can be found here

61 The Avenue 15/02728/FULL6

Last year a proposal to demolish the existing house and replace it with two blocks of flats containing a total of 8 two-bedroom flats was refused consent.  The scheme has subsequently been dismissed at 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.  The applicant has appealed against this decision and the hearing was due to take place on 22 March.  At the time of writing the decision was still to be announced.

Land behind 56a Foxgrove Road 15/05329

An application was made in December last year for a 3-storey block of flats on land presently occupied by garages behind 56A Foxgrove Road.  The proposal is 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 council have yet to make their decision.

14 Southend Road 16/00267/FULL1

An application has just been submitted to convert the house at 14 Southend Road to seven flats.  The proposal includes a four-storey side and rear extension to the existing house to create 2No. one-bedroom and 4No. two-bedroom apartments.  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

The second application for a change of use to the three-storey building from a printer’s office to a House of Multiple Occupation with seven bedrooms (four of which have en-suite bathrooms) and shared dining and bathroom facilities, after the first application for eight bedrooms was refused on the grounds of below-standard provision, is still under consideration by the Council.

96 Bromley Road 15/04782

The application to convert the vacant veterinary clinic premises, situated between Rituals hair salon and In2Pappadom on Bromley Road, to a take-away, was refused permission last week.  The reasons for the refusal had not been published at the time or writing, however there had been strong opposition to the proposal on a number of issues from local residents and groups.

Nat West Sports Ground, Copers Cope Road 15/04801/FULL1

An application has been made 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.  The application includes a low-level canopy for washing cars and a portakabin office.

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, which is now nearing completion, Marqueen House, Ironstone House and Provident House on Burrell Row, and Kelsey House at Thornton’s Corner.  As a result, many thousands of square feet of purpose-built office space has been lost and cannot be reclaimed.  

However, one piece of good news in this regard is that the application to change the use of the offices at 50 Burnhill Road has just been dismissed at appeal.  

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Council propose enforcement for long untidy land adjacent to 39 Southend Road

At the Plans Sub Committee meeting on  Thursday 4 February 2016 Council Officers will be requesting permission to undertake enforcement action on the untidy land adjacent to 39 Southend Road, Beckenham BR3 1 TR. This will be welcome news to local people that signed a petition to get the site cleaned up.  More information can be found at:

UNTIDY SITE – LAND ADJ 39 SOUTHEND ROAD, BECKENHAM, BR2 1SP

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Church Motor Company to remain in Beckenham

Church Motor Company has told CCARA that they are operating as usual and intend to stay in Beckenham, after losing the garage they have occupied for over eleven years.

Last autumn we reported in The Express that CMC, situated next to the Beckenham Methodist Church on Bromley Road, was set to close after the church, which owns the garage building, secured planning permission at appeal to change the use of the building from Light Industrial to Storage.

CMC have been unable to continue trading from the same building, however they have acquired a smaller building directly opposite while they look for alternative, permanent premises elsewhere in the Beckenham area.  They intend to retain an office here and establish a drop-off and collection point for their Beckenham customers.  Cars will be taken to CMC’s Bromley garage where work will be conducted before being returned to Beckenham for collection.

CMC’s telephone number 020 8650 7373 remains unchanged.

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PLANNING and DEVELOPMENT Bulletin – January 2016

This is the first of a series of regular bi-monthly updates on planning and development in the Copers Cope area.  Our aim is to keep you informed with a concise and informative snapshot of recent planning applications, decisions and appeals we think are of particular interest. You can look up planning references on the Council website.

56 Copers Cope Road, Ref 15/03470/FULL1

A second planning application to demolish the existing late19th-century house and replace it with a four-storey block of nine flats was refused last October after the previous application in March 2015 for a five-storey block of ten flats was withdrawn.  Grounds for refusal were that the scheme constituted a cramped over-development of the site.

Royce House, 56a Copers Cope Road, Ref 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.  The applicant has appealed against this decision and the hearing is due on 22 March this year.

Ardec Shop, High Street, Ref 15/02489/FULL2

Last August the Council refused an application by the owner of the old Ardec shop to convert it to a restaurant on the grounds that the shop is part of the designated Primary Shopping Frontage of the High Street and restaurant use would not complement this function.  The applicant has since appealed against the decision although, at the time of writing, an appeal hearing date has not yet been set.

Telephone Exchange 15/04184/TELECOM

An application by O2 and Vodafone to install a telecommunications mast, antennae and other equipment on roof of the Telephone Exchange, at the corner of the High Street and Kelsey Park Road, has been refused.  The proposed location of the mast, on a prominent part of the roof, was judged to be unacceptable with regard to the visual impact it would have on the streetscape, in particular the view looking down from Church Hill.

Vodafone, who own the masts and telecoms equipment on the roof of Kelsey House next door, have been given notice to quit by the landlord.  In summer last year, Kelsey House was granted prior approval for change of use from offices to flats. O2 owns the existing mast at the Exchange.

1A Wickham Road, Peach Design, Ref 15/05100/FULL2

An application has been made for a change of use to the three-storey building from a printer’s office to a House of Multiple Occupation with eight bedrooms and shared dining and bathroom facilities. Four of the bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms.

Bricklayers Arms, High Street, Ref 15/05287/FULL1

The Bricklayers Arms pub has made an application to replace the existing outbuilding and build an infill extension at the rear to enlarge and remodel the interior.

278-280 High Street, above Martin & Co and Red, Ref  15/04371/FULL1

A planning application to add a mansard roof and two studio flats to the building has been refused.  Reasons for refusal were that the proposed mansard style roof alteration and additional floor, by reason of its design, siting, form and bulk and its relationship to adjacent buildings in this prominent location would be detrimental to the character and appearance of the existing building, the integrity of the adjacent terraced buildings and special interest of the setting of the Odeon Cinema Listed Building within the Beckenham Town Centre Conservation Area. It would therefore represent an inappropriate and visually obtrusive development.

94 High Street, Rendezvous Cafe, Ref 15/04478/FULL1

After the first the application was refused, a second application for a replacement shop front has been approved and the work has recently been completed.

86-90 High Street, adjacent to Pier Luigi’s restaurant, Ref 15/04138/FULL1

An application for the construction of a mansard roof to provide two studio residential units has been refused.  Reason for refusals are that the proposed mansard style roof alteration and additional floor, by reason of its scale, design and close proximity to roofscape boundaries, would be detrimental to the character and appearance of the existing building within the Beckenham Town Conservation Area and would represent a visually intrusive addition, harmful to the character and appearance of the area

Change of use from Commercial to Residential

Prior approval applications to convert office premises, many fully-let, to residential use continued to be granted consent at an alarming rate throughout the latter half of last year.  Marqueen House, Ironstone House and Provident House on Burrell Row, towards the western end of Beckenham High Street, were all granted permission in December to be converted to flats, at a loss of many thousands of square feet of purpose-built office space:

Marqueen House, 215 High Street, Ref 15/04323

Consent granted to convert offices on the first, second and third floors to 18 one-bedroom flats, with five parking spaces.

Ironstone House, 205-213 High Street, Ref 15/04293

Consent granted to convert offices on the first, second and third floors to 18 one-bedroom flats, with five parking spaces.

Provident House, 6-20 Burrell Row, Ref 15/04343

Consent granted to convert offices on the ground, first and second floors to 2 two-bedroom and 18 one-bedroom flats, with six parking spaces.

The few remaining office buildings in and around the High Street are under increasing threat of change of use:

Burnhill House, 50 Burnhill Road (adjacent to Lidl), Ref 15/03333

Prior approval was refused at the end of September 2015 to convert the offices to 5 two-bedroom and 9 one-bedroom flats, citing the lack of parking provision as the reason for refusal.  The applicant has since appealed the decision although, at the time of writing, a date for the appeal hearing has not yet been set.

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Have your say – Plan for development in Beckenham and the borough – consultation ends 31 October 2015

Bromley Council are asking residents to comment on the Local Plan for the borough which sets out development for the next 15 years, including proposed development sites for future school, employment and housing use across the borough.

Comments are invited on the development sites identified as Draft Site Allocations. It also includes a limited number of new and revised policies, and designations which provide the context for the draft site allocations, and the requirement of the Local Plan to be in general conformity with the London Plan. For Beckenham the main points are in regard to schooling.

Local people have until October 31 to respond . See link below for more information

You may recall that in March 2014 the Council asked for comments to develop the Local Plan.  The Copers Cope Area Residents’ Association responded with the following suggestions.

  • A policy on all Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMOs). There has been an increase of planning applications to convert properties into HMOs in Beckenham and stronger planning policies are required to ensure HMOs are of a decent standard. Other boroughs have such policies.
  • A stronger policy of control over the conversion of office buildings to flats to ensure that Beckenham retains office workers who boost the High Street economy.
  • A policy that requires planning applications for shop fronts to ensure that the cables and water pipes on the party walls are maintained. Beckenham High Street has a number of poorly maintained party walls between shop fronts.
  • More robust policies on locally listed buildings, tall buildings and the skyline to ensure that the character of Beckenham is retained.
  • A policy on protecting natural heritage (the plan refers only to built heritage) such as Beckenham’s heritage tree stock.
  • Securing additional commuter rail services in London (more services from Beckenham to Blackfriars and beyond, plus Beckenham to Clapham Junction)

As none of these suggestions has been incorporated into the plan, we will be responding to this consultation and requesting them again.

Office space in Beckenham Town Centre is now a critical issue.

There have been over 20 applications involving small scale conversions over shops while 7 large office block conversions (from office to residential) have either been approved, are pending, or have been refused but likely to be subject to appeal.

On 13 October 2015 Planning Minister Brandon Lewis announced that the temporary permitted development rights that have enabled offices to be converted to new homes without having to apply for planning permission will be made permanent. We have asked the Council to implement an  Article 4 Permitted Development Class J for Beckenham Town Centre, which will remove these permitted development rights and require developers to seek planning permission to change office space to residential. Bromley Council have implemented an Article 4 in Bromley Town Centre. We encourage residents to respond to the consultation requesting an ‘Article 4 Permitted Development Class J for Beckenham Town Centre’. Without office workers our town centre will become a dormitory town with little day time economy, affecting the occupancy of shops and the number of independent retailers.

Local Plan for Beckenham

The Draft Local Plan does not focus much on Beckenham, but the notable points are:

  • Beckenham Town Centre has been proposed as a ‘Key Office Cluster’ which the Council would like to safeguard.  Beckenham Office Cluster is very small, only Burrell Row.  Respond to the consultation if you agree or do not agree with the boundary. While we agree with the proposed boundary, we also suggest that an Article 4 Permitted Development Class J for the whole Town Centre must be a cornerstone of any policy to safeguard office space.
  • 2 x new free primary schools have already been approved in Beckenham (Harris Academy and Langley Park)
  • 1 x new free secondary school,  The Beckenham Academy had approval from the Secretary of State for Education, although no site currently has planning permission.
  • Harris Beckenham, Manor Road and the former Co-op sports ground in Balmoral Avenue have been identified as potential sites either for an expansion of the existing school or for a new Harris secondary school. Respond to the consultation if you agree or do not agree to the former Co-op Sports Ground, Balmoral Avenue being used for the secondary school.
  • The new Langley Primary School will require re-designation of the existing two schools (Langley Boys and Langley Girls) complex from Metropolitan Open Land to Urban Open Space to allocate land for an additional primary school (Langley Park Free School). Respond to the consultation if you agree or do not agree to this re-designation.
  • The Council will safeguard the land and route alignment for  investment to extend the Tramlink from Beckenham Junction to Crystal Palace.
  • One of four areas in the borough suggested for Areas of Special Residential Character (ASRC) status is  Central Beckenham (including The Drive, Church Avenue, The Crescent, top of Rectory Road). Note the High Street has recently been designated a conservation area. ASRC status will offer residential areas which are able to demonstrate special character with some planning protection in addition to that conferred by other policies in Bromley’s Unitary Development Plan.

How to respond

The consultation document is available with the opportunity to make your comments up until 31 October 2015.

You can view, download and comment on the consultation document on the Local Plan Consultation Portal.  In order to make online representations, you will need to register or have already registered on the Local Plan Consultation Portal.  We have produced a guide to registering on the portal which you may find useful. Once registered, you will automatically be informed of future Local Plan consultations.

The easiest and most convenient way to give feedback is online through the Local Plan Consultation Portal. However, if you do need to send your comments by post please address them to Chief Planner, Planning Division, Directorate of Regeneration and Transformation, Civic Centre, Stockwell Close, Bromley BR1 3UH.

Please let us know your views too by emailing chairman@coperscope.org.uk

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Planning Update Oct 2015

83 Copers Cope Road, Light industrial site next to the railway line by New Beckenham Station
Developers have been given consent to demolish the existing buildings and build eight 5-bedroom houses on the site after winning permission at appeal in July.

56 Copers Cope Road

A new application has been recently submitted to demolish the existing late19th-century house and replace it with a four-storey block of nine flats, including basement, after the previous application in March for a five-storey block of ten flats was withdrawn. The Council is currently considering this fresh application.

Further details can be found online under reference 15/03470/FULL . Comments/objections in regard to this application can be sent by email to planning@bromley.gov.uk , the application is due to be decided on 22 October 2015. Please ensure you provide your full name and address including post code to ensure your comments are registered.

Royce House, 56a Copers Cope Road

An outline planning application made earlier this year to demolish the existing houses and replace them with five, three-storey, four-bedroom houses has been refused permission. The reasons given for refusal were that the scheme constituted a cramped over-development of the site; poor provision of outdoor space for what would have been 4-bedroom dwellings; the hard landscaping proposed for the frontage would fail to preserve or enhance the character of the area.

Tudor Manor, Beckenham Place Park

Consent has been granted for the demolition of the existing house and the construction of three new, two-storey houses on the site, after an earlier application was refused permission.

Church Motor Company, Bromley Road

Sadly, Church Motor Company will close before the end of the year, following a successful appeal by Beckenham Methodist Church, which owns the building, against the Council’s decision earlier in the year to refuse an application for change of use from Light Industrial to Storage. Situated in buildings off Bromley Road, next to Beckenham Methodist Church, CMC currently employs four staff and has served the town’s car- owners for eleven years. During that time it has built a reputation in Beckenham for high quality service, borne out by its broad base of local customers. CMC are currently searching for new premises in the Beckenham area.

Ardec Shop, High Street

The Council has refused an application by the owner of the old Ardec shop to convert it to a restaurant. The reasons for refusal were: that the shop is part of the designated Primary Shopping Frontage of the High Street and restaurant use would not complement this function; The proposal would result in an unacceptable loss of amenity to neighbouring residents with regard to noise, smell and disturbance.

61 The Avenue

The council recently refused permission for another planning application for 61 The Avenue to demolish the existing house and replace it with two, new blocks of flats of two and three storeys each, providing 8 two- bedroom apartments.

Rendez Vous Café

Shop front changes have been refused on the grounds that the shape of the shop front and materials used all contribute to the character of the area. Changing these so drastically and without regard for the original designs would have a serious impact on the character of the area and would significantly harm the Conservation Area. This is a good early result for the Beckenham High Street Conservation Area.

Change of use from Commercial to Residential

The glut of prior approval applications shows no sign of abating, with office space in Beckenham being lost at an alarming rate. These are some of the most recent ones:

Kelsey House, 77 High Street (above Kelsey Kitchen & Bar) – Granted prior approval at the end of July to convert offices on the first, second, third and fourth floors to 8 one-bedroom and 8 two-bedroom flats.

St George’s House, 2 Bromley Road (above Ask Pizza Restaurant) – Granted prior approval at the beginning of August to convert offices on the first and second floors to 2 two-bedroom and 4 one-bedroom flats.

Marqueen House, 215 High Street – Prior approval refused at the end of May to convert offices on the first, second and third floors to 18 one- bedroom flats, citing the lack of parking provision as the reason for refusal.

Ironstone House, 205-213 High Street – Prior approval refused at the end of May to convert offices on the first, second and third floors to 18 one-bedroom flats, citing the lack of parking provision as the reason for refusal.

Provident House, 6-20 Burrell Row – Prior approval refused at the end of May to convert offices on the ground, first and second floors to 2 two-bedroom and 18 one-bedroom flats, citing the lack of parking provision as the reason for refusal.

Burnhill House, 50 Burnhill Road (adjacent to Lidl) – Prior approval refused at the end of September to convert offices to 5 two-bedroom and 9 one-bedroom flats, citing the lack of parking provision as the reason for refusal.

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Closure of road junction at Lawn Road and Copers Cope Road

Some residents may have received a letter advising of the decision to trial the closure of the road junction at Lawn Road and Copers Cope Road.  This came as some what of a surprise to our Association as previously we had been advised (and published in our newsletter) by Bromley Council that the favoured scheme to deal with the notorious accident hotspot at the junction of Copers Cope Road, Bridge Road and Lawn Road was:

  • to leave the junction almost the same with possible minor adjustments to curb lines
  • the whole junction to be re-tarmaced with coloured anti-skid covering
  • and possibly using 2 sets of warning signs

Noting there was not enough room for a mini roundabout at the junction unless Lawn Road was closed and such a closure may have a detrimental to affect on traffic flows in surrounding roads.

Our ward councillors subsequently met with the Council Traffic engineers and it was decided to install a mini roundabout requiring the closure of  the Lawn Road junction with Copers Cope Road.

Naturally we are very pleased the Council and ward councillors are taking action to make the junction of Copers Cope Road, Bridge Road and Lawn Road safer. However, we have raised our concerns with our ward councillors and Bromley Council that this decision was taken without sufficient consultation of local people. As far as we are aware there has been no formal consultation at all, which seems remiss for such a significant change to the road layout.

That aside it does not mean the proposal is not an effective solution to the accident hotspot and we are keen to hear your views. The Council are planning to implement the proposal imminently so any feedback (positive and negative) should be provided to the Council and ward councillors as soon as possible.  We would be grateful if you could copy us in also.

  • Bromley Council emails: john.joyce@bromley.gov.uk, angus.culverwell@bromley.gov.uk
  • Ward Councillors emails: russell.mellor@bromley.gov.uk, stephen.wells@bromley.gov.uk, michael.ticker@bromley.gov.uk
  • Our email: chairman@coperscope.org.uk

LawnRDClosure

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Flower Beds at Thorton’s Corner and sale of toilet block

The Copers Cope Area Residents’ Association have successfully registered the flower beds and surrounding land not built upon at Thornton’s Corner as an Asset of Community Value (which means the Council have to offer it to the community before selling it privately).  The main purpose of doing so was to ensure the community was informed if any additional land was sold alongside the toilet block (concerns were raised of corner being redeveloped with a larger footprint than the existing toilet block).

Unfortunately no community groups were able to submit a bid to acquire the toilet block. This is not surprising as it would not cost effective to continue to run the building as a toilet and the cost of repurposing the building would be prohibitive.  The toilet block is now up for sale (it does not include any additional land), the particulars can be found below. Hopefully the new purpose of the building will enhance the High Street.

If no buyer is found the building will be demolished, we will ensure to engage with the council if demolition will occur to see if the building can be utilised or influence what will go in its place to enhance Thornton’s Corner

 

 

 

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The Foxgrove Social Club in Westgate Road is closing

A hidden gem in Westgate Road, The Foxgrove Club was funded and built by local residents in 1907 and has managed by club members ever since, is sadly due to close on 30 September 2015.

We understand that the club has been in an ongoing dispute with Lewisham Council regarding the annual rent and that recent rent increases are unaffordable for the social club.

At this point we are not aware what Lewisham Council intends to do with the building  we will let you know when we find out more.

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Heritage Tree saved at 25 West Oak

Finally some good news for our threatened trees…. the Council have refused the felling of mature oak tree in the back garden of 25 West Oak Beckenham due to a lack of evidence indicating or proving that the tree was causing damage to nearby houses. Further details can be found online here.

There are numerous applications every year to fell or pollard our old for trees. Luckily this tree had a Tree Protection Order (TPO) so planning needed to be applied for before it could be felled. Trees without TPO are sitting ducks. If you have an old or mature tree in your road please contact the Council to ensure the tree is covered by a TPO. You can do this online at the link below.

Tree Protection Orders

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Bromley Council Consultation on planning requirement changes – have your say by 22 July 2015

Local list of information requirements – consultation

Bromley Council  are asking for your comments on the revised local list of validation requirements for planning applications.

They  have reviewed our current local list of validation requirements for planning applications in line with national guidance and have updated the list and are now consulting on the revisions to the local list of information requirements and would welcome your views on the changes.This consultation is open for 8 weeks until 22 June 2015.Further information

The review has led to minor changes to items already on the list by way of making requirements clearer for applicants and ensuring that the most up-to-date policies are referenced. The revised list also introduces some additional requirements for non-householder applications to ensure that proposals meet current legislative and policy requirements, are capable of delivering high quality design and are addressing sustainability polices.

Furthermore by requiring applicants to submit certain details as part of the planning applications for major and/or complex and sensitive proposals, it is possible to prevent the use of conditions requiring further submissions which will reduce timescales for implementing permissions.

Additional requirements added to the local list include:

  • Clarification in respect of Design and Access Statements
  • Large scale (1:20) plans to show sensitive or complex design details
  • Living roof details
  • Computer generated images for major proposals
  • Accommodation schedules for all new dwellings
  • Submission of construction logistic plans
  • Submission of landscape proposals
  • Clarification in respect of information required for Lifetime Homes and wheelchair units
  • Material samples for appropriate schemes
  • Sustainability statements

Have your say

You can comment by emailing us at planning@bromley.gov.uk making sure you title your message ‘Local Information Requirements Consultation’ or by writing to us at

Planning (Local Information Requirements Consultation)
Civic Centre, Stockwell Close,
Bromley BR1 3UH

This consultation is open for 8 weeks until 22 June 2015.

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Planning application for a new house to be built at the rear of 32 Church Avenue.

A planning application has been submitted for new dwelling house to the rear of No.32 Church Road.  Further details can be found online under reference 15/01541/FULL1.
Comments/objections in regard to this application must be provided by 10 June 2015, they can be sent by email to planning@bromley.gov.uk

Please ensure you provide your full name and address including post code to ensure your comments are registered.

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