Residents in Cleveleys raise concerns with MP over supported living plans in neighbourhood

Residents in Cleveleys have voiced concerns over plans to set up accommodation for people with supported needs at a residential property in the town.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 12th April 2022, 12:30 pm

They met up with Blackpool North and Cleveleys MP Paul Maynard to express fears that the proposed scheme, earmarked for premises on West Drive, could lead to anti-social behaviour problems in a quiet residential neighbourhood.

The proposals are due to go before a planning officer rather than being debated by Wyre’s planning committee, as the plans have not been called in by a councillor.

The application, for a Certificate of Lawfulness for up to four persons over 18 years old with supported needs, has attracted a string of objections which have been lodged with Wyre.

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An application for supported living at an address on West Drive, Cleveleys, has attracted opposition in Cleveleys

The scheme is being put forward by Oaktree Supported Services, which is based at Waterloo Road in Blackpool and is listed as providing accommodation for people who require nursing or personal care, have learning disabilities, mental health conditions or substance misuse problems.

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During the meeting at the Park Club on West Drive, one resident said: “How will the place be run, what sort of staff will be there to oversee things?

"We haven’t been told anything about these plans.”

MP Paul Maynard met concerned residents in Cleveleys

Many residents believe the house will be used to house people with drug problems, should the plans be permitted, and that it could impact on the neighbourhood.

But Matthew Bond, director at Oaktree, says there are no plans to house people with substance misuse issues, although he would not elaborate further on the proposals.

He said: “We don’t have any plans for drug rehabilitation, the neighbours are jumping to conclusions.

"I believe house prices are the main concern here and that is why they are so against it.

"They have held a meeting but they didn’t invite me to it, so I haven't been able to discuss things with them.”

Mr Maynard said: “It was helpful to meet with West Drive residents and listen to their concerns as they face a second fight in three years to prevent the property being used for a purpose to which it is not suited.

“OFSTED have made clear it is not suitable as a children’s home by refusing registration, so switching to accommodating adults as an alternative that does not require OFSTED registration is a troubling move.

“The Fylde coast has an over-concentration of most forms of supported housing, and I’m not certain West Drive is a suitable location.

"I will be looking to Wyre to make a decision very carefully, and ensure full consideration is given to the detail of the proposal.”

Cleveleys councillor, Coun Andrea Kay, who is Wyre’s lead member for young people and a county councillor, was also at the meeting.

She said: "There are still a lot of questions over these proposals. If the residents knew what was being intended, it could set their minds at rest.

“If the people who come here are younger adults, you can’t just tar everyone with the same brush, some young people do need support.

"But it’s important that the ones who do come here receive a good standard of support, including with education and training.”

However, she added: "These amenities should be referred from Lancashire rather than taking people from outside the county area.”