Residents win the fight against new elderly care home

Train evacuated between Havant and Haslemere

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CONTROVERSIAL plans to build a care home in a residential road have been rejected.

The proposed development in Oval Gardens, Gosport would have housed 18 elderly people where a bungalow currently stands.

Councillors voted unanimously against the plans at a meeting of Gosport Borough Council’s regulatory board last night.

Residents had raised concerns about the size of the property and the extra traffic it would bring.

The council accepted officers’ recommended refusal of planning permission because of inadequate provision for transport and poor design.

David Taylor, of Oval Gardens, spoke on behalf of residents at the meeting.

He said: ‘It’s a huge relief. This development is totally inappropriate for Oval Gardens on many counts.

‘It’s a monolithic monstrosity.

‘It’s just inappropriate for the houses in this area.

‘I have been involved in running care homes for 30 years; I am not unsympathetic to the needs of the elderly.

‘I take no pleasure in having to put down developers but there are times you have just got to step up and say what you believe is right.

‘I am pleased it has turned out well for us.’

Around 50 residents filled the council chamber at Gosport town hall to hear the decision.

A petition with 140 signatures was delivered to Gosport Borough Council urging them to reject the plans along with 93 letters of objection.

There were also 29 letters of support.

‘We’re not looking to upset anybody,’ said the applicant, Chris Caswell.

‘It’s not something I have taken lightly.

‘I spoke to a lot of residents first.

‘I live just at the back of the planned area and I was actively encouraged by one resident to submit the plans.

‘We received 29 letters of support, which is a lot.’

Mr Caswell says he will decide whether to pursue the application once he receives the formal decision notice.

Robert Tutton, acting on behalf of Mr Caswell, said: ‘Clearly we do not agree with the council’s decision.

‘People said putting it there would be the wrong place, but where is the right place? We believe it is the right place.

‘We are expecting the formal decision notice early next week and then we will sit down and decide where to go from there.’