Last year we posted news about the proposed demolition of Purbook’s former Vicarage for retirement flats to be built by McCarthy & Stone Retirement Lifestyles. Many of you submitted comments against the proposal to Havant Borough Council planning department. HBC officers declined permission and also declined an appeal.
McCarthy & Stone then appealed the planning refusal decision to the Secretary of State. An Inspector from the Secretary of State reviewed Havant Borough Council’s decision.
The Inspector concluded that:
- Havant Borough Council’s policies for the supply of housing are out of date
- Additional housing is a benefit to an area with no housing land supply
The Inspector then summarised that permission for demolition of the Purbrook Vicarage and the building of the retirement flats should be granted. The full appeal decision is available on the planning portal.
The Inspector also said that due to the decision, it would be unlikely that the local businesses currently trading from the Purbrook Vicarage estate would be able to successfully relocate. Several of these businesses’ lease expire this year. Our thoughts go out to those folks whose businesses and employment will be impacted by this decision.
The identification by the Secretary of State of a lack of a 5 year housing plan could green-light new development plans at other locations that would have previously have been refused.
Next time you are travelling through Purbook, take a look at this 150 year old building because it’s not going to be there for much longer.