Scheme to redevelop former bank approved against wishes of parish council

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Plans to give a former bank a new lease of life have been approved by Cheshire East Council.

One London Road Ltd have been granted planning permission to change the use of 1 London Road to allow the basement and ground floor to be used for flexible purposes and the upper floors to be used for offices.

Additionally the scheme includes a three-storey rear extension with a roof terrace and the reconfiguration of the roof space for office purposes.

External alterations including raising the ridge line, the installation of dormer windows to the front and rear elevations, a new oriel bay window to the side elevation and the relocation of the front entrance.

The prominent building, located at the junction of London Road and Heyes Lane, has been empty since the Royal Bank of Scotland closed their Alderley Edge branch in November 2018.

Alderley Edge Parish Council recommended that the planning application was refused stating "The Parish council strongly recommends refusal and call in to Committee on the grounds that: the design is unsympathetic to the existing character of the building and is vague in some degree to materials and specifically retention of Portland stone facia etc. The existing building holds a key Northern gateway location in the village. Proposals see considerable increase in massing and would be an overdevelopment of the site.

"Envisage signage would be excessive, and collectively with the massing be domineering in its location/situation. This signage should be reduced to be more discreet. The application for flexible A1, A3, A4, B1, D1 use is entirely unsuitable and gives no outline as to how each variant of use might be accommodated in appropriate detailed designs. The appropriate balance and mix of classified usage in Alderley Edge ought to be born in consideration.

"Alderley Edge is already sufficiently provisioned with A1, A3, A4, D1. In the initial proposal for significantly expanded Business space, the usage could be transitory with a probable effect being wholly insufficient in on site car parking provision. A submission of a sustainability plan should be required to allow this to be evaluated."

However, the planning officer recommended it was approved stating "The proposal complies with the standards set out in the development plan and would not lead to any significant injury to residential amenity. The design of the proposal is acceptable and would not negatively impact on the Surrounding area and it is compliant with all of the relevant policies of the Development Plan and national policy guidance."

Speaking about the application Colin Williams of The Planning Studio said "The applicant company proposes to bring back the building into full economic use, with the initial conversion being for full office uses within the building.

"However, as the client company is proposing to invest very significant funds creating a modern high quality extension and a conversion of the property across all floors, they wish to retain the option in a future date to offer part of the basement and ground floors for alternative commercial uses.

"At this stage, it is not known which alternative commercial use would be preferable and therefore we are instructed apply for a range of town centre type uses that would be appropriate for the building.

"We therefore have sought to apply for flexible purposes a range of uses within classes A1 (retail), A3 (restaurant), A4 (bar), B1 (offices) and D1 (medical)."

The plans can be viewed on the Cheshire East Planning Portal by searching for reference 19/3406M.

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Planning Applications
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Comments

Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Tony Haluradivth
Friday 15th November 2019 at 4:58 pm
Another stupid, spiteful decision by CEC Planning dept.
Tony Haluradivth
Saturday 16th November 2019 at 6:59 am
And they (Council planners) will no doubt soon be approving crazy plans to build many houses on the fields on Heyes Lane (next to "Jenny Heyes" ). Has anyone seen the said fields lately? I haven't, but there is a wonderful new lake there, perhaps a couple if boat houses would be more in keeping.
Duncan Herald
Monday 18th November 2019 at 9:20 am
What's the betting that the former bank will become a bar restaurant?
No I don't want that but is such a use percieved by the developer as the best way to make a profit?
By the way, there are still a handful of 'proper' shops in the village; Xmas is coming, why not shop in the village shops? Use them or lose them? Or if not, will that encourage A.E. becoming part of 'Greater Wilmslow'?
Mike Davies
Tuesday 19th November 2019 at 7:27 pm
CEC are determined to ruin our village despite the concerns of the residents and our parish council. They just don’t care. See the massive houses being built to completely fill the plot. So sad that we can do nothing about it - apart from vote them
out. And that does very little.

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