Portchester shipyard plans given a shake-up from developer

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A CONTROVERSIAL scheme to turn a former shipyard into homes and a business centre is back on the table.

Plans to turn the former Vosper Thornycroft shipyard in Portchester into new housing, shops and business units were unveiled last year.

However, the scheme was withdrawn a few months ago after the idea proved unpopular with residents. Now developer Quadrant Estates has come back with new designs which it hopes will encounter fewer objections.

The new plans see a reduction in the height of the tallest building from 12 to 10 floors, the removal of shops and restaurants and a new entrance off Hamilton Road instead of Southampton Road. The plans include 155 homes, with planning permission for up to 163. The homes will be over two, three and four-storey buildings, with one 10-storey block of flats.

Quadrant Estates MD Christopher Daniel said: ‘The revised application reflects our willingness to listen and try and balance local stakeholders’ concerns with the need to create a viable development to ensure the regeneration of Trafalgar Wharf.

‘We believe these proposals now present the optimum solution for all concerned.’

However, some people are unconvinced about the new plans for the 22-acre site

Paul Woodman, from Portchester Civic Society, said: ‘It is the block of flats which we are against. They have reduced the height from 12 to 10 storeys but we still think it would be intrusive.

‘Also with that many people coming into the area it will put a huge strain of facilities like schools and doctors.

‘We are not totally against it as it would tidy up that area but it is the size, especially of the 10-storey block, that we are concerned about. I know the sheds are large but this is going to be very obtrusive.’

Portchester West ward councillor Nick Walker said: ‘A 10-storey block staggers me, there’s nothing remotely like 10 storeys around there. Also I haven’t seen anything yet which deals with the huge amount of pollution left on that site from when it was a shipyard in the war.’

Quadrant Estates says it will improve flood defences between Portchester Castle and Port Solent to defend 400 existing homes.