Student flat rejected over poor living conditions

An inspector refused to sanction changes to conditions attached to a scheme for the conversion of a listed building to student accommodation in a Yorkshire city.

The appellant sought to vary a condition setting out the approved plans to allow a common room to be converted to an additional student apartment and to remove a condition requiring the common room to be retained as such.

Despite recognising the health and well-being benefits of the communal space provided to compensate for the small size of some of the thirteen units of self-contained accommodation, the inspector found that the property, set in its own grounds, provided a good standard of amenity for occupiers and there were no specific council policies which justified the need for a communal space in what was a relatively small student development. She concluded the loss of the communal room would not harm the living conditions of the occupiers. However, after viewing the limited outlook and daylight levels provided by lightwells serving the room, the inspector held that any future occupier would experience unacceptably low living conditions and dismissed the appeal.

Inspector: Alison Scott; Written representations

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