Many residents put forward their comments in respect of the recent planning proposal to develop the site of the Old Rectory at Sanderstead Roundabout. The developer Aitch met with the Sanderstead Residents' Association, the Riddlesdown Residents' Association and the local councillors to address any concerns and made amendments in response to planning officers' recommendations.
In the main residents were happy with the proposal for the site and felt the design was in keeping with the traditional style of the area. There were concerns over the increased capacity impacting the sewage network and one or two residents were concerned about overlooking.
As local councillors we were supportive of the proposal to build a supported living accommodation for residents who wanted to live in the community independently for longer. This would also free up family homes whilst residents who needed a little support would feel confident in their new homes.
It was therefore a surprise when the council suggested that the application be refused as the local councillors did not feel that there were material reasons for doing so. It will be no surprise to you that this decision was taken before the election in May when an executive mayor was voted in by every ward in Croydon and who has promised to listen to the residents of the borough.
Since his election and the election of a new cabinet I am pleased to see that a more common-sense approach has been applied to planning applications by the committee with the resident voice being heard.
I am sure that if this application has come forward after May it would have been approved and the unnecessary costs to the council due to the planning inspector's involvement and reversal of the decision would not have been necessary.
I have attached the inspector's report which makes for interesting reading.