Councillors vote against plans to build 13-flat block in Langley

Councillors voted against an application to build 13 flats at the Langley Grammar School House site at a meeting on Wednesday.

The application looked to demolish the former caretaker’s house and garage and clear some trees to make way for the construction of a three-storey detached building, consisting of 13 flats – two one-bed and 11 two-bed – on the southern side of Reddington Drive, neighbouring Langley Grammar School.

The application by Excellare Ltd also includes vehicular and pedestrian access, as well as 14 car parking spaces, landscaping and tree planting.

Objections were received for the application, with reasons cited including too many flats for the site, the ‘poor impact on the character and appearance of the area’ and the ‘very imposing building’.

Some of the other reasons for objection included the plan causing a ‘wind tunnel along Reddington Drive’, being ‘out of keeping with the school’, ‘loss of privacy to neighbouring residents’, and no proposal of social housing.

Another reason for objection was that existing traffic congestion and parking in the area would be made ‘worse’ by the proposal.

Planning officers recommended that the application be delegated to the planning manager for refusal for seven reasons.

One reason stated that the proposed development did not consist of family housing ‘as defined by the core strategy within a suburban area and would result in the net loss of family accommodation’.

Another stated: “By virtue of its sitting layout, design, scale, height and positioning, the proposal would appear overly dominant in the Reddington Drive streetscene which would cause harm to the character of the area and would not be in-keeping with the existing landscaped appearance of the site or the pattern of development in the area.”

The application not demonstrating that the proposal ‘would create a safe and suitable access and layout which minimises conflicts between traffic and pedestrians’ was cited as another reason.

Other reasons stated that the proposal ‘would not provide an appropriate level of external amenity space’, and that insufficient information has been given to ‘make a detailed assessment of the impacts on biodiversity’.

The design and access statement for the plans explains that Langley Grammar school intends on disposing the site to raise additional funds to improve the school’s facilities.

At a planning committee meeting on Wednesday, councillors voted in favour of the recommendation to delegate the application to the planning manager for refusal.

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