The site had benefited from a permission granted in 2003 which authorised the erection of seven flats. The permission had lapsed and an inspector noted that the site continued to be occupied for employment purposes involving a scaffolding firm which did not materially impact on the amenity of nearby residents. There was no reason to conclude that an employment use would not continue he opined, noting that the proposed flats would require the installation of two prominent lightwells which were not a characteristic of the area. Flats on the first, second and third floors would have windows which faced each other in close proximity and since this was the only source of light to their lounge, kitchen and dining areas, would give rise to a severe loss of privacy and an over-bearing impact.
In addition the inspector decided that the scheme would make inadequate provision for on-site cycle parking and an independently audited basement impact assessment had not been provided. Consequently it was not possible to conclude that the scheme would maintain the structural stability of neighbouring properties and protect the water environment. Nor had the appellant submitted a planning obligation securing financial contributions towards affordable housing.
Inspector: Ian Radcliffe; Written representations