News from British and Canadian Conservatives

Thursday, January 18, 2007

McCarthy & Stone threatens Cheriton's services

I was astounded by an appeal lodged by McCarthy and Stone against a planning condition on their new Assisted living units in Cheriton.

In March 2005, McCarthy & Stone first requested permission to build 70 "assisted living" apartments and 10 affordable housing units on the site of the old dairy in Shaftesbury Avenue and Stanley Road, adjacent to Cheriton Rec. This proposal was refused due to its impact on neighbours through overlooking and because it failed to provide services needed by the local community - including those who would subsequently live in the flats - landscaping or amenity space for the residents. It also contained insufficient affordable housing for such a large scheme. McCarthy & Stone appealed, and lost.

In June, 2006, McCarthy & Stone submitted further plans for the site. These addressed the issues of overlooking and lack of landscaping and amenity space for residents. The plans were approved with various conditions attached - one being that the firm provides a "commuted sum" to pay for the provision of community services, as the plans still failed to do so.

McCarthy & Stone have now started building, but have launched an appeal against the provision of services for local residents, including those who will live in their property! The services which the money would support would include improvements to Cheriton library, a service which I am sure that many future McCarthy & Stone residents would like to use. So why are objecting to providing these services?

Their website boats:
"We also try, wherever possible, to build within easy walking
distance of the shops and other amenities, each scheme being designed to provide
an environment that is as peaceful and relaxing as possible."
McCarthy & Stone market themselves as being the top of the range when it comes to assisted retirement living, and charge their residents accordingly. Yet, it seems, they expect the Council Tax payer to provide the services to their residents and want to completely exclude themselves from the local community!

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