Crime fears over plan to convert family property

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CONCERNS have been raised over plans to turn a three-bedroom family home into a shared house.

Neighbours fear the changes to a house in Powerscourt Road, Copnor, could lead to an increase in crime, difficulty in parking and could affect privacy.

Plans have been submitted to Portsmouth City Council for the scheme, which would see the property be converted to have seven bedrooms.

Councillor Neill Young, ward member for Copnor, has called in the decision, meaning any plan would have to be given by the planning committee.

In an email he said: ‘This area has a major issue with parking and a house of multiple occupancy will create even more issues for residents.’

The application for the house of multiple occupancy (HMO) is to be determined by the end of the month.

One resident, Diane Grant, added: ‘An HMO will materially alter the character of the area, in line with roads like Waverley Road where HMOs are in local media for crime and anti-social behaviour.

‘Therefore I believe the gross over-development of this house and changing to a HMO will have a negative impact on neighbours and detrimental impact on community.’

So far, 12 objections have been reported on the council’s planning website.

Kathryn Reynolds, another resident, said: ‘Parking is already difficult on this road, so a further seven cars would be a nightmare.

‘There are no HMOs on this section of the road, and we believe this will cause noise issues to families in the surrounding houses.’

The application was submitted by Alex Venables, of West Tytherley, near Stockbridge.

Resident Caroline Moore said: ‘I strongly object to the proposed changes to be made to 239 Powerscourt Road.

‘The area is predominantly a family neighbourhood and taking a family home and turning it into a HMO with up to seven, possibly more if rooms are shared, tenants will have a negative impact on the current family-oriented feel this area has.’

See 16/02009/FUL on the council’s planning website.