Residents protest against Gosport planning application off Grove Road

Gosport residents are objecting to a proposed development due to loss of privacy and destruction to the local environment.

The proposed development site next to Grove Road, proposed development site.
The proposed development site next to Grove Road, proposed development site.

Two and three-storey apartment buildings have been proposed to Gosport Borough Council adjacent to Grove Road to accommodate 39 assisted living apartments.

Thorngate Churcher Trust and the Amiri Group applied to redevelop the area.

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Michelle Collins, an insurance underwriter who lives on Grove Road, said the plans do not fit with the community or the local area.

‘No one was particularly happy with the design,’ she said.

‘One thing they mentioned is that there’s a protected oak tree that they sympathetically included in the designs.

‘The properties behind it particularly have got their back gardens going straight onto it, they are going to be in darkness pretty much all day.

‘The apartments that they’re putting in have balconies so there's a lot of overlooking and loss of privacy.

‘There were also potential issues with ground contamination, a lady who lives just behind where the development is supposed to be has tried to buy the land a couple of times to turn it into a wildlife haven.

‘She was told a couple of times that she couldn't buy it because of the contaminants in the soil.’

Residents were told in February that the development would be smaller, providing 28 flats with the protected tree providing a focal point.

In September residents found out that the development was re-drawn to include 39 flats with the tree intended to be cut down.

Michelle added: ‘The main objection is that the tree has got to go, if they kept it to the lower amount of flats the tree could probably stay.

‘They’re not really listening in regards to the tree, some people on my road have lived here for 30-40 years, it’s always been there and it holds a lot of memories for people.

‘There’s a hell of a lot of wildlife out there it’s got badgers, foxes, they've already done a survey where they’ve identified reptiles that they know they’re going to have to remove because they’re a protected species.

‘Whatever needs to be built there needs to fit with the community and the local area and what they’re proposing currently doesn't.’

The design and access statement that forms part of the application says: ‘The site presents an opportunity to deliver affordable accommodation which enables older people to live independent lives with on-site support.

‘The submitted application will provide 100% affordable accommodation rather than just the required 40% under the Gosport’s affordable planning policy.

‘Currently, the site is a privately owned parcel of unused open scrubland with no public footpaths or public right of ways intersecting the site.

‘The site has remained unused for several years.’