Extra-care apartments plan approved

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A plan to build 75 two-bed extra-care apartments on the former Marie Correlli Playing Field has been unanimously approved by Stratford District’s Planning Committee (West).

The scheme, put forward by Housing and Care 21, involves the construction of 75 accommodation units on the land off Drayton Avenue.

A restaurant, hairdressers and a communal residents’ lounge are also included.

However the plan has not been without its critics with some local residents objecting over fear about increased subsidence in the area, the possibility of their gardens being overlooked and concerns over vehicle access and drainage.

Stratford Town Council also objected with concerns about drainage and vehicle access while Sport England were against the scheme saying the playing field has not been shown to be surplus and that there were no plans to replace it.

Grace Allen, speaking on behalf of the applicant, said: “Just to be clear, this is not a care home, it is an extra care facility encouraging independent living but offering support to residents where it is needed.

“The applicant intends to provide as much affordable housing on this site as possible and it will be significantly higher than the 35 per cent normally required in housing schemes.”

She added that generally extra care accommodation is occupied by people already living in the local area and would help meet the housing needs of the district’s aging population.

The site will include a hairdressers, restaurant and would host community events.

Tim Willis, extra care programme lead for Warwickshire County Council, added: “We need schemes like this not just in Bishopton, we need them in Studley, Shipston, Alcester and all over the county. We need 1724 units by 2020.”

Cllr Simon Lawton said: “I really like this, I think the design is excellent. I also think the car parking ratio is 60-70 per cent better.

“It ticks all the boxes and I’m more than happy to propose that we accept this proposal as outlined by the report.”

The committee voted unanimously to approve