Planning Application

20/P/1673/FUL

B And M Bargains Limited The Triangle Clevedon BS21 6HX.

Reconfiguration and two storey extension to the existing retail unit to include a gym (1,054m2) (use class D2) and additional ground floor retail space to create two units (534m2); and erection of a food retail unit (195 m2) (use class A3/A5) and 39no. senior living apartments (29no. 1 bed and 10no. 2 beds) (use class C3); to include reconfiguration of the car park, public realm and landscaping works.

Click on the Application Reference above to go to the North Somerset Planning page for this application. 

The applicant has submitted revised plans, our view on this is noted here

The Conservation & Planning Group, on behalf of the Civic Society, noted that there were already over 400, mostly negative, comments on this Application. The Group have objected to this Application, their comment text is as follows:

CLEVEDON CIVIC SOCIETY

AUGUST 2020

Dear Sir/ Madam,

APPLICATION 20/P/1673/FUL. B&M Bargains Ltd. The Triangle, Clevedon.

The Civic Society OBJECTS to the above application for the following reasons; 

• Loss of car parking. The original planning approval for this site provided car parking for the town centre, not just for the supermarket. The reduction of spaces from 266 to 145 spaces is claimed to be adequate for the repurposed B&M store, but makes no allowance for additional parking for the other town centre businesses, or indeed for the proposed gymnasium and drive thru restaurant. 

• Proposed car park layout. This is unsatisfactory because it is centred entirely on the B&M building providing no significant linkage with Queens Square, also combining the vehicular entrance and exit in the same location is likely to be unsafe, particularly given the proximity of the drive thru restaurant.  

• The decision to locate an old peoples home on this important town centre site was taken by the applicant against pre-application advice from North Somerset Council,which stressed the need for affordable housing. The same point was made repeatedly at meetings with the Town Council and the BID and in our consultation response. We are told that this is necessary to fund works to the rest of the development. As a consequence Clevedon town centre will be negatively affected for the forseeable future, particularly because it will no longer be possible to form an east-west pedestrian connection between Queens Square and the developing cultural quarter centred on the Curzon cinema. The desirability of forming this linkage was stressed by the Design Review Panel. 

• We cannot envisage a stand alone application for an old peoples home on this town centre site being approved so why it is acceptable in this context, particularly as it does not include any on site affordable units.   

At the pre application meeting with North Somerset council, the proposed scheme was considered harmful to the character of the conservation area. This is still the case, the bulk of the old peoples home which the applicants try to equate to the scale of the Curzon, is in fact overwhelming when seen in the context of the buildings in Station Road and Lower Queens Road. 

• Realising the exiting potential for this site as a new gateway to the town centre is one of the objectives of this application in the planning statement, and abortive layouts are included showing how this potential could have been realised. Sadly the submitted scheme could just as easily be for an edge of town retail park, it does not add to the character of the Triangle Conservation Area, nor does it create a frontage to Great Western Road which improves the entrance to the town or integrate the scheme into the town centre. 

To summarise we are very disappointed that the application would, if approved lock Clevedon town centre into a format which is already out of date, and with the current changes in retail would not equip it to respond flexibly to future changes. Whilst we concede that the B&M box could be redeveloped in future to respond to changing demand, the old peoples home will be an immovable obstacle on a significant area of the site for the forseeable future. 

For the above reasons we ask that you REFUSE this application.  

Yours Faithfully,

Clevedon Civic Society.

B&M Bargains Ltd. made an amended submission on 5 February 2021. In the view of the Conservation and Planning Group, the applicant has made little notice of the many objections and made only 'cosmetic' changes to the original plans. Our letter objecting to the revised plans is as follows:

CLEVEDON CIVIC SOCIETY

FEBRUARY 2021

Dear Sir/ Madam, 

APPLICATION 20/P/1673/FUL. B&M Bargains Ltd. The Triangle, Clevedon.

Reconsultation following submission of amended details on 5th February 2021.

We have reviewed the above amended information and are very disappointed that the changes proposed do not address any of the issues raised in our original letter of objection. Consequently we resubmit our original letter as follows;  

The Civic Society OBJECTS to the above application for the following reasons; 

•  Loss of car parking. The original planning approval for this site provided car parking for the town centre, not just for the supermarket. The reduction of spaces from 266 to 145 spaces is claimed to be adequate for the repurposed B&M store, but makes no allowance for additional parking for the other town centre businesses, or indeed for the proposed gymnasium and drive thru restaurant. 

•  Proposed car park layout. This is unsatisfactory because it is centred entirely on the B&M building providing no significant linkage with Queens Square, also combining the vehicular entrance and exit in the same location is likely to be unsafe, particularly given the proximity of the drive thru restaurant.  

•  The decision to locate an old peoples home on this important town centre site was taken by the applicant against pre-application advice from North Somerset Council,which stressed the need for affordable housing. The same point was made repeatedly at meetings with the Town Council and the BID and in our consultation response. We are told that this is necessary to fund works to the rest of the development. As a consequence Clevedon town centre will be negatively affected for the forseeable future, particularly because it will no longer be possible to form an east-west pedestrian connection between Queens Square and the developing cultural quarter centred on the Curzon cinema. The desirability of forming this linkage was stressed by the Design Review Panel. 

•  We cannot envisage a stand alone application for an old peoples home on this town centre site being approved so why it is acceptable in this context.   

At the pre application meeting with North Somerset council, the proposed scheme was considered harmful to the character of the conservation area. This is still the case , the bulk of the old peoples home which the applicants try to equate to the scale of the Curzon, is in fact overwhelming when seen in the context of the buildings in Station Road and Lower Queens Road. 

•   Realising the exiting potential for this site as a new gateway to the town centre is one of the objectives of this application in the planning statement, and abortive layouts are included showing how this potential could have been realised. Sadly the submitted scheme could just as easily be for an edge of town retail park, it does not add to the character of the Triangle Conservation Area, nor does it create a frontage to Great Western Road which improves the entrance to the town or integrate the scheme into the town centre. 

To summarise we are very disappointed that the application would, if approved lock Clevedon town centre into a format which is already out of date, and with the current changes in retail would not equip it to respond flexibly to future changes. Whilst we concede that the B&M box could be redeveloped in future to respond to changing demand, the old peoples home will be an immovable obstacle on a significant area of the site for the forseeable future. 

For the above reasons we ask that you REFUSE this application.  

Yours Faithfully,

Clevedon Civic Society.

At the North Somerset Planning meeting on 24 June 2021, the decision was made to defer making a decision on this application pending further consultations and site visits.

November 2021: Some revised drawings were deposited on 18 October showing revised road crossings and small areas of landscaping. These were aimed at demonstrating that the applicant has modified the scheme to take account of public concerns, but does nothing to address the major objections to the scheme.

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