£15m waterfront plan in Gosport sparks homes row

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A ROW has broken out over a £15m investment in Gosport that developers hope will be a ‘trigger moment’ for growth.

The borough council has given the green light to outline plans for a 75-bed hotel, 150 homes and space for shops, restaurant and bar on the site.

The site will stand in place of the Mayfield Buildings and is encircled by Mumby Road and Harbour Road.

Investors hope around 180 jobs will be created in Gosport.

But Chris Haddock, owner of Gosport Boat Yard in Harbour Road is concerned future residents may complain about noise from his firm.

Mr Haddock said: ‘I can see something has got to happen in this area as it’s verging on being derelict. But 47ft from our office is going to be the start of the first building.

‘We have cranes going on, we have industrial work going on, repairing boats.

‘We have vehicles coming and going, off-loading boats, loading boats to go up country on quite a regular basis.

‘I cannot for the life of me, looking at the car parking numbers, see how we are all going to be accommodated.’

‘And it was a very generous comment to say “we’re going to bring pedestrians through the site to the coast”.

‘The coast really is Stokes Bay and around that area. We are harbour-side industrial.’

He said a boat yard in Bosham had closed after residents in new homes complained about the noise.

But investor Glynne Benge of Beaulieu Properties LLP said it would be difficult to regenerate the area without residential properties.

He said his firm had owned the site for 14 years and had discussed plans with the council a number of times.

He said: ‘The council has for some years had the ambition that it would like to see regeneration and redevelopment of the waterfront.

‘This scheme represents a trigger moment for the regeneration of the Gosport waterfront – this is your plan.’

Members queried the plans over flood risks and parking.

But Gavin Hall, a director at Savills architects, said the car parking had been increased to 182 spaces at the site.

And he said a flood barrier would be put in at the entrance to the basement car parking at the north of the site.

Gosport’s Labour leader Cllr Dennis Wright questioned the demand and said other proposals in Gosport had not materialised.

All councillors present at the meeting on Tuesday night voted in favour of the plans.