Sunday, 10 May 2015

Paragon housing group unveils plans for Radnor & Sandra House sites

Elmbridge Council is partnering with the Paragon housing group to develop a number of new affordable homes at the Radnor and Sandra House sites in Hansler Grove, East Molesey, and the former Molesey Centre in School Road. Cllr Steve Bax understands that a planning application is currently being tweaked by Paragon in order to address concerns raised by residents following the public exhibition late last year, and will be submitted in the next few weeks.

Here is our article from The Molesey News in March:

SOCIAL housing provider Paragon has unveiled plans for a comprehensive redevelopment of the Radnor House and Sandra House sites in Hansler Grove, East Molesey.
It intends to build a trio of three-storey blocks of affordable housing for families to help meet a demand in Molesey and the borough.
But in doing so it must knock down not only Radnor House - a former elderly person’s home, now laying empty - and the adjacent old Molesey day centre, it will also demolish Sandra House which is still in use and home to key workers and their families.
Paragon displayed its plans at an open evening at Radnor House in December and invited residents to give their feedback.
Molesey councillor Steve Bax attended a meeting with Paragon’s business director Chris Whelan in the Autumn to discuss the proposals which were then in an earlier stage.
Steve raised concerns about height and mass of the proposed buildings and also about the ill-advised decision to make a road access in the narrow and heavily congested School Road.
He had further discussions with Elmbridge’s Cabinet member for Housing, Councillor James Browne, who assured the small number of temporary housing units at the site will be for families made suddenly homeless - not ‘neighbour from hell’ types which was the Molesey Conservative Residents’ concern - who Elmbridge Borough Council has a duty to house.
Currently when these cases occur they are put up in bed and breakfast in the London Borough of Hounslow at cost to our taxpayers.
Councillor Browne admitted that Elmbridge is “under pressure to meet housing targets” and is unable to compete with the deep pockets of private developers in buying new land for affordable homes. So it has to make the most of sites that are owned by EBC and Paragon such as this one.
With things having gone a ‘little too quiet’ recently, Steve got in touch with Paragon on February 12.
Mr Whelan, the director, revealed that a planning application would be submitted for the scheme in around April this year.
Until then the plans are being revised in response to residents’ feedback from the consultation.
Mr Whelan said: “We are looking at the mass to see if we can reduce the impact, and are generally trying to see if there are things we can improve following the consultation.”
Paragon will revisit the School Road entry idea with Surrey County Council and has promised to assist Sandra House residents in finding alternative accommodation.
Both sites will be demolished and built at the same time as one another for reasons of cost and to avoid unnecessary disruption.
Email us if you are concerned.

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