Flats plan for former hotel in St Annes given go-ahead
A former 22-bedroom hotel in St Annes looks set to be converted into 12 supported living flats for people with learning difficulties and mental health issues.
The scheme, earmarked for the former Elsinghurst Hotel on Derbe Road, has been given the green light by planners at Fylde Council.
The housing project, to be overseen by the Allerton Group, will see residents able to live in their own self-contained flats but with access to help and support, according to their needs.
It is envisaged that most residents would be aged between 20 and 30 and would be likely to be college students.
Councillors determined that there was an increasing need for accommodation in the area which offered more independent living opportunities for those with additional needs, where appropriate.
However, the council received some 20 objections to the proposals.
Some neighbours expressed concerns about whether the residents would have drug or alcohol issues and whether the building would be overseen by a manager.
A report prepared for councillors noted: “Concerns have been raised over the potential to generate additional noise and disturbance by virtue of the proposed use for supported housing, particularly at unsocial hours in the evening and early morning when residents would be unsupervised.
“Concerns have also been raised with respect to potential fear of crime as a result of residents’ ‘unpredictable’ behaviour.”
But the council report also stressed that the nature of the proposal was unlikely to have a major impact on the area, which is close to the seafront and has a mix of commercial and residential properties as well as hotels and bed and breakfast accommodation.
It stated: “Given the mix of surrounding uses in the locality, the proposal would not adversely alter or be incompatible with the varied character of the area.
“Similarly, when considered in comparison with the building’s previous use as a 22-bed hotel, the proposed 12 supported housing units would not unduly affect the living conditions of neighbouring occupiers by reason of noise disturbance, crime and disorder, loss of privacy or any other nuisance.”
The report stated: “The applicant has clarified that it is not intended for residents to be referred because of drug or alcohol issues.”
No objections to the scheme were raised by consultees St Annes Town Council.