Portsmouth City Council: Pure Town Planning appeal success is spreading across the south coast – this time moving along to Portsmouth. We have just won an appeal for a retrospective change of use of a large industrial building to form a retail furniture warehouse in the Rodney Road area of the City, a stones throw from Fratton Park.
Our client approached us having already opened the discount furniture outlet store in the former industrial building previously used as a packaging factory. We applied for retrospective consent to Portsmouth City Council making the argument that the use was clearly within the character of this mixed commercial area – and where only a short distance away the Council had recently granted consent for a large charity second-hand furniture store. The planning officer was supportive but asked for a “Sequential Assessment” to demonstrate that there were no appropriate premises available in one of the designated retail centres of the city. We duly undertook the assessment which was initially accepted.
Unfortunately our planning officer’s team leader intervened and decided that the application breached policies which sought to avoid loss of employment opportunities. The application was hastily refused, with the decision notice also siting a potential alternative site in the form of a supermarket closure recently announced in the press.
We advised our client to appeal the decision which we were duly instructed to do. We were successfully able to persuade the Inspector that the proposed use was indeed appropriate to the area, that it provided a level of employment at least commensurate with a B8 warehouse use (which would be a lawful use of the premises) and that the supermarket closure site was not actually available to this use and there were no other suitable premises available within retail centres. The Inspector duly granted full permanent consent without conditions.
If you have recently had planning refused then do please speak to Pure Town Planning for our independent and honest opinion of your chances of success on appeal.