The business plan for Blatchington Road in Hove refused approval

PLANS to transform a high-street property have been rejected after councilors criticized a proposal to bring back frontline steps.

The application was submitted to Brighton and Hove City Council by Annie and Janjan Ltd, which is run by Conservative councilors Robert Nemeth and Tristan Mills.

But officials advised the planning committee to withhold approval — and the committee voted nine-to-one against the project.

Plans were to enlarge the first floor flat at 10 Blatchington Road, Hove and convert the basement into a studio flat.

A report to the committee said the storefront would “significantly detract from the character and appearance of the building and the surrounding area.”

Members were told that replacing the ‘level entrance’ with steps in a commercial building would disadvantage those with mobility issues.

The Argus: Plans for 10 Blatchington Road scrappedThe plans for 10 Blatchington Road were scrapped

The planned raising of the ground floor to its original height in order to create sufficient living space in the basement allows for a maisonette apartment with two bedrooms by increasing the upper floors.

Planning agent Jon Puplett of Whaleback Planning and Design said the building was a three-story house with steps up to the front door until it was converted into a commercial building in the early 1900s.

He said the conversion has resulted in a three-story building becoming two stories, with “wasted space” above and below the ground floor.

Mr Puplett, a former planning officer for the council, said as the current business is by appointment only it will let customers know about the steps.

He said: “The proposed shop front design is historic in nature and is almost identical to that recently approved by Council at 8 Blatchington Road just next door.

“The resulting street scene appearance would be almost identical to the approved design, but would also fit the broader street scene, which includes a mixed building design, alternating three-story buildings with buildings containing street-level commercial units.”

Cllr Nemeth is also behind the changes to 8 Blatchington Road next door, turning a former sex shop into a home. A beauty and massage shop is located at number 10.

Independent councilor Tony Janio backed officials’ recommendation to deny the permit after viewing properties along Blatchington Road.

The Argus: Cllr Nemeth is behind the changes to 8 Blatchington Road next door, transforming a former sex shop into a homeCllr Nemeth is behind changes to 8 Blatchington Road next door, turning a former sex shop into a home

He said: “Retail doesn’t have steps but the residential areas do on the other side. Certainly in the Planning Committee we should be moving things forward, not going backwards.

“To suddenly reintroduce footsteps on a retail property… I think officials did a good job of refusing that.”

Labor councilor Daniel Yates said he would support plans to convert the building back to residential use, but not if it barred people with mobility issues from accessing a shop.

He said: “It is unacceptable to tell people with mobility issues near steps that they cannot be seen when making an appointment to visit a property as no provision has been made to get into that property.

“We’ve heard a lot from Badge (Brighton Access for Disabled Groups Everywhere) and other community advocates speaking about design accessibility. We need to apply this design accessibility to modified properties as well.”

Conservative councilwoman Carol Theobald was the only committee member to vote for the program. She said: “It’s much better to still have an attractive commercial unit. Otherwise it would just be a house wall.

“Without those steps I don’t think you get a decent basement apartment out of it. You need the steps to increase the height.” The business plan for Blatchington Road in Hove refused approval

Fry Electronics Team

Fry is an automatic aggregator of the all world’s media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials, please contact us by email – The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Related Articles

Back to top button