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Councillors in Tenby have agreed that plans to redevelop the former post office depot building should be rejected if the application doesn’t include an affordable housing aspect
The building situated at Deer Park/Warren Street has been empty since Royal Mail relocated their delivery operations in Tenby to a purpose-built delivery office in Narberth back in 2019; whilst the Post Office store also moved in 2020 to a new premises on South Parade.
Consultation began back in 2021 on a pre-planning application proposing 34 residential apartments, and ground floor retail units on the site.
Formal notice was given that the company Trillium (RMF) Ltd, which specialises in consulting and engineering services, that an application was to be submitted to the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority for planning permission and conservation area consent for a scheme that incorporated a four storey residential apartment building and a two storey rear mews building, delivering 34 residential apartments (comprising 23 one-bed units, 11 two-bed units) alongside commercial space at ground floor level.
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Providing an update to members of Tenby Town Council at their meeting on Tuesday (February 7) the town clerk Andrew Davies said he had been in contact with the PCNPA case officer that was liaising with the applicants, and following a ‘viability assessment’ – the best that could be achieved was ‘four social rentals and one low cost purchase’ as part of any scheme.
“PCNPA went in with a request for affordable housing to be included, but the developers said no, stating that construction costs had risen and that it wouldn’t be viable,” Mr Davies told members.
Councillors had previously expressed their concerns over a lack of affordable housing provision included in the plans, concerns also relayed by Tenby Civic Society’s planning committee, who said that the site was ideally located for social housing, feeling that the applicants’ failure to address that provision would need correcting in any approval.
Cllr Laurence Blackhall reiterated again that he felt the developers were trying to get planning permission with minimal or no affordable housing conditions attached.
He said that even with viability assessments, this proposal was nowhere near acceptable.
“I hope that PCNPA looks at its own policy. The portion of affordable housing isn’t included as expected, which is nowhere near acceptable.
“I hope that the plans will be rejected, and this application thrown out.
“It adds nothing to the town or does anything to solve the current housing crisis,” added Cllr Blackhall, with his fellow councillors in favour of rejecting the proposals.
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