HIGH COURT BATTLE TO SAVE HOE CONSERVATION AREA
Picture left to right: Carole Worrall, Martin Worrall, and Penny Tarrant
HOE residents are preparing for a David and Goliath legal battle with Plymouth City Council and developers – over plans for 76 flats in the Hoe Conservation Area.
Members of the Hoe Conservation Area Residents’ Association consulted lawyers and barristers in London, and have now been advised that their campaign could win in a court of law, said group spokesman Martin Worrall.
Mr Worrall, said: “We have now decided to take our battle to the High Court for a judicial review to have this Hoe development overturned.”
“London developers are looking to demolish former care home Peirson House, in Mulgrave Street, and build a seven-storey block of flats, which towers over neighbouring houses.”
Following hot on the heels of another planning case in Elburton, Plymstock, where the City Council went against its own policies and procedures- and a complaint was taken to the Local Government Ombudsman by residents’ to investigate – and they won.”
The Hoe residents’ are looking at taking our case to the Local Government Ombudsman to investigate Peirson House,” said Mr Worrall.
Campaigners on the Hoe have the support of city MP Oliver Colvile, together with all three local ward councillors.
Mr Colvile, said: “This application does not have the approval of the local community and the development is too high, and setting a dangerous precedent in one of our most sensitive conservation areas.”
Residents’ Association Chair, Penny Tarrant said: “Our campaign to save the Hoe Conservation Area is on a par with local residents on the Barbican in 1957, who successfully fought plans to pull down many ancient landmark buildings in the area after the Second World War.”
“Our association was formed at the same time as the Hoe area was being granted conservation area protection in 1977 to stop the post-war tower blocks being built.
“It would be a shame to repeat the mistakes of the past by building a tower block on the Peirson House site.”
“We would like to see Peirson House site redeveloped, but it must be done in the right way with developers and planners-working in partnership together with the local community.”
“We need to be more inclusive with family accommodation, not just tiny flats.”
“This type of development would never happen in other conservation cities in the UK, so why is PCC allowing this to happen in the jewel of the city’s crown on the Hoe?”
HIGH RISE SITE OPPOSITE PEIRSON HOUSE BEING DEVELOPED
“The Peirson development is going against the advice of Historic England, the Georgian Group, Plymouth Architectural Trust, and Plymouth Civic Society,” added Mrs Tarrant.
Mr Worrall added: “Now that the Council has formally rejected the residents’ complaint, and the fact that permission has now been granted means the decision cannot be overturned or challenged at a local level.”
“Residents’ are now forced to fight a court battle at vast expense to both themselves and PCC to prevent this dreadful towering Hoe eyesore from being built.”
“We need to come together to stop a precedent being set for tall buildings to be thrown up all across the waterfront -in what are supposed to be protected Conservation Areas,” said Mr Worrall.