28th Oct, 2016

Former North Leamington School homes plan granted

Ian Hughes 14th Sep, 2016 Updated: 3 hours ago

A DERELICT part of the old North Leamington School is set to make way for 44 new homes.

Warwick District Council this week gave the go-ahead for the development of the abandoned Croft Hall site off Cloister Way.

Spitfire Properties LLP is looking to build a mix of detached, semi-detached and terraced houses, together with two blocks of flats, and car parking. The entrance to the development would be through the former school gates off Cloister Way.

A planning application to build a similar number of homes on the site of the 1960s school buildings was refused three years ago after officers said the homes would be too close together, out of character with the area, and lacked sufficient affordable homes.

But developers say the new proposals have taken the rejected application into consideration and the demolition of the school would be good for the area as it was considered an eyesore and contained asbestos.

There have however been a number of objections, from Leamington Town Council and neighbouring residents, raising concerns including layout of the development, loss of privacy, increased noise, and security due to rear alleyways running past existing homes.

And despite previous concerns raised over only 14 affordable homes being included, there are just five in the approved application.

The developers argued it was not financially viable for any more affordable homes owing to the land value required by site owner Castel Froma – the charity which annually cares for over 400 people with complex neurological conditions at its home in nearby Lillington Road.

The developers also highlighted the cost of demolishing the existing buildings and clearance of the site as another factor in not providing affordable homes.

The other original North Leamington School buildings have long gone – with the Manor Hall site now housing the new school and the Park site, next to the Croft site, being turned into new homes by developers.