Planning inspector gives green light for scheme after council refusal

Inland Homes has been given the go ahead to build a 206-home scheme in Staines-upon-Thames after a planning inspector upheld its appeal.

The brownfield regeneration specialist appealed against Spelthorne Borough Council’s decision to refuse the scheme last June.

4. A3445 Podium

Inland Homes 206-home scheme in Staines-upon-Thames

The scheme, designed by Assael Architecture, involves the demolition of a former Masonic Hall and the building of two new tower blocks , one of 15 storeys and the other 13 storeys.

Councillors turned down the scheme on the basis the scheme is too high and would have an impact on the character and appearance of the surrounding area and the 48 car parking spaces provided are insufficient.

However, the inspectorate following an inquiry, upheld the appeal. The decision notice said that although there would be “minor harm” to the view from nearby Memorial Gardens and from a spot on the other side of the river, the scheme would “not harm the character and appearance of the area overall”. The inspector also found that the level of parking would not harm the living conditions of people living in nearby properties.

A total of 70 out of the 206 homes will be affordable, with 65% of these homes for affordable rent and 35% for shared ownership.

The scheme provides pedestrian access to a bus station and high street. The buildings are connected by a podium at the first floor containing shared amenity space.

Assael said the scheme “seeks to increase biodiversity by introducing extensive planting” and will include a small park.

Tim Chapman-Cavanagh, director at Assael: “The successful appeal of this scheme comes as excellent news to Assael.

4. A3445 Podium

“It’s been great to work with Inland Homes to provide a meaningful contribution to this thriving area, in the form of affordable homes and a biodiverse landscape and public realm. Our vision is for the proposals to benefit new and existing residents alike, and create a modern addition that sits harmoniously in its surroundings.”

Inland Homes earlier this month reported a 46% increase in annual turnover but said its pre-tax profit is at half its pre-pandemic level due to £3.5m in net additional costs relating to a partnerships contract.

The group said its gross profit margin on its housebuilding and partnerships businesses remained ‘unsatisfactory’.