Issue - meetings


Meeting: 09/06/2021 - Planning Committee (Item 6)

6 Application No 202065 - 54 - 58 Reading Road. Wokingham pdf icon PDF 592 KB

Recommendation: Conditional Approval subject to legal agreement.

Additional documents:


Proposal: Full application for the proposed erection of 34 no. retirement living apartments including communal facilities and associated car parking and

landscaping, following demolition of existing 3 no. dwellings.


Applicant: McCarthy & Stone


The Committee considered a report about this application, set out in agenda pages 89 to 170.


The Committee were advised that the updates within the supplementary planning agenda included context and clarification regarding condition 18.


Ian Hann, agent, spoke in support of the application. Ian stated that this application would support people in living healthy and happy lives within the Wokingham Borough. Ian added that the NPPF was clear that it was critical for this type of housing to be provided and prioritised. Ian stated that that the Wokingham Borough was seeing growth of elderly persons, which was predicted to rise above the national average going forwards. Ian added that no objections had been received from residents or the Town Council, and English Heritage and highways officers had also raised no objections. Ian commented that the site was well located within a sustainable area, within easy walking distance to shops and amenity facilities, with good transport links including buses and trains. Ian stated that the proposals would generate around £500,000 per year in increased spending for the local economy, in addition to affordable housing contributions and CIL payments. Ian concluded by stating that the proposals would combat loneliness and isolation within the elderly community by releasing under-used family houses which would be replaced by high quality retirement living accommodation.


Bill Soane commented that the application only provided 32 car parking spaces for 34 units. Bill stated that whilst this was marketed as a retirement facility, many of the residents would still be of working age when living in this accommodation. Judy Kelly, Highways Development Manager, stated that this type of accommodation typically had a lower provision of parking spaces than regular market flats, due to the restricted age of potential occupants. Judy added that the site was in a sustainable location, and there was precedent for completely car free developments within the area. Judy stated that, on balance and within the age restricted context, the proposals were considered acceptable given that parking space provision was only 6 spaces lower than for a market development and a travel plan was conditioned which could be reviewed when required.


Graham Vaughan, case officer, commented that the average age of occupancy for developments such as this was typically above the age of 55.


Andrew Mickleburgh queried whether there was a specific car parking standard which applied to this type of accommodation, queried what the realistic age of occupants could be at this development, queried whether affordable housing could have instead been provided on site, and sought clarification that vehicles going along the reading road towards Wokingham could not turn right in to the proposed development. Judy Kelly confirmed that the requirement for this development was to provide 15 resident car parking spaces and 3 visitor spaces, whereas this site would provide  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6