Centre for homeless families is approved

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HOMELESS families are set to benefit from a new accommodation centre after plans were approved by councillors.

Gosport Borough Council wants to turn Agnew House, in Mill Lane, into a temporary housing centre for families who find themselves on the streets.

It will spend between £850,000 and £900,000 bringing the former sheltered housing scheme up to required standards.

At a meeting of the council’s regulatory board last week, councillors voted to approve an application for the change of use.

Council leader Cllr Mark Hook said: ‘This is the right site.

‘It needs to be within reach of local shops and bus routes and it needs to be a site where there is access to open space.

‘The majority of people who will be using the centre are just people who have fallen on hard times.’

The council had received a petition against the plans signed by 202 residents who were worried about parking, noise disturbance and increased crime.

There were also calls for there to be a live-in warden on the site at all times to protect against anti-social behaviour.

Agnew House needs to be renovated before it can be used and solar panels will be added to the roof of the building.