Inspector approves appeal to demolish Gidea Park's Hare Lodge
PUBLISHED: 11:00 06 December 2017
An appeal to demolish a period building which residents have battled to keep for a decade has been approved.
Hare Lodge, Upper Brentwood Road, Gidea Park, is facing demolition after an inspector made the decision, based on factors such as the building’s “different characteristics” compared to the rest of the area, for it to be knocked down.
The development proposed is to demolish the existing building and for the construction of a new residential development consisting of four one-bedroom apartments and four two-bedroom apartments with communal amenity space and on-site parking.
The application, submitted in May by Haverbridge Homes, was refused a few months later but following the appeal, planning permission has been granted for Hare Lodge, which is part of the Gidea Park Special Character Area (GPSCA) to be destroyed.
Councillor David Durant said: “If despite the overwhelming local support to save Hare Lodge it’s still demolished, then nowhere is now safe.
“We don’t want housing targets to take priority over the special protections, as it does appear the inspector’s decision prioritised a target over protecting our local heritage.”
In 2012, plans to build on the site were thrown out after 239 residents sent Havering Council letters of objection and it was unanimously agreed that the proposal would not go ahead.
Two other applications to demolish the Hare Lodge building and build flats and houses on the site had been refused in 2007 and 2008 respectively.
Councillor Durant is calling for the council to appeal the decision made by the inspector.
He said: “I feel a failure to do so regarding this totemic matter, would be a sign the administration has hoisted a white flag and given a green light to over development throughout Havering.”
A Havering Council spokeswoman has confirmed that the council is currently reviewing the decision and a final result will be reached early next week.