Regeneration hope as care home proposal is approved

Redevelopment of a former care home could be a catalyst for the regeneration of Lancing, a developer has claimed.

Monday, 16th January 2017, 12:34 pm
Updated Monday, 16th January 2017, 12:37 pm
Artist's impression of Roffey's Bell Memorial Home. Image by F10 Studios SUS-171101-081221001

Roffey Homes secured planning permission on Monday to demolish the Bell, in South Street, replacing it with a four-storey block of 32 apartments.

Roffey managing director Ben Cheal told Adur District Council’s planning committee: “Regeneration has been slow coming but the village has great potential to re-establish its place as a desirable location to live and work between Worthing and Brighton.

“My brief to ECE architects was to design a contemporary building that reflects this potential, providing optimism to those currently living in the village and giving a very visual sign to those visiting and driving past that things are changing.”

Lancing Parish Council backed the plans, along with 25 letters of support, compared with three against.

But the parish expressed concern about a lack of parking, supported by South Street business owner Sandra Clapton.

She said some businesses were struggling to survive because of a lack of parking, arguing the development’s 34 spaces would be insufficient.

Mr Cheal said the past experience suggested the figure would be adequate.

Roffey’s argued it would not be viable to provide affordable housing.

It expects sales values to be restricted due to current house prices in the village.

Providing £100,000 for infrastructure improvements would also reduce profit margin from 20 to 15 per cent.

Roffey upped its expected contribution to £150,000 after scrutiny of its figures by an independent valuer.

Labour’s Les Alden said Adur should insist on its local plan target of 30 per cent affordable homes.

But officer Gary Peck explained the historic policy was tough to achieve as government policy now placed increasing weight on viability in determining the suitable level.

He said negotiation following the independent valuer’s report had allowed an extra £50,000 to be sought, some of which could contribute to the building of affordable housing elsewhere in the district.