Fire fears and parking lead to refusal of flats in Grantham

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Plans for 24 flats behind Gladstone Terrace in Grantham, were criticised by South Kesteven district councillors, who decided to go against officers’ recommendations and refuse planning permission yesterday.

The application by Invicta Rentals was rejected over concerns with layout, scale, and access. The fact that Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue had objected due to the width of Prospect Place being below the required 3.7m for a fire engine, was also highlighted.

In response to a suggestion to install fire hydrants, Councillor Rosemary Kaberry-Brown said: “A fire hydrant isn’t going to save anybody’s life on the top floor if there’s a serious fire.” Coun Charmaine Morgan said she had spoken to the chief fire officer, adding: “He said he would not be prepared to put a relative of his in that building if it were to go up.”

Councillors also questioned the provision of just seven parking spaces. The applicant’s agent David Goodridge said: “By putting these into the rental market there is no requirement for vehicles, and that would become part of the tenancy agreement. Residents would not be able to park on site and it would be monitored by the management company.”

Proposing the plans’ refusal, Coun Morgan said: “They can’t police that area, and with the best will in the world they can’t stop people owning a car. I believe by approving this we’re creating a knock on impact to on-street parking in the area.”

Also at the meeting was Gladstone Terrace resident Alison Lewis, who said: “If a vehicle was to come from the flats and another in the opposite direction, the approaching car would have to back out on to Manthorpe Road, which would be extremely dangerous.”

Courtney Finn said Grantham Civic Society had intially opposed the development, which is next to the old Manthorpe burial ground. However, he stated: “The application does respect the character of the conservation area and we think the turning area proposed would benefit all the residents of Prospect Place.”