There have been quite a few applications under Permitted Development to turn Shepley House on Restmor Way into residential units.
- August 2016 – 14 units – refused
- November 2016 – 14 units & 15 parking spaces – refused
- February 2017 – 14 units – refused
- November 2017 – 8 units – refused
- November 2018 – 8 units – refused
- June 2020 – 5 units – approved
This latest one – DM2020/01811 – is for 6 units. Sadly residents are not allowed to comment on Permitted Development applications and as long as they meet certain criteria, it will be approved.
One of the issues with turning offices into residential dwellings is that they are often created to the minimum size; not necessarily the type of housing needed for local residents; don’t provide any amenity space; limited parking and not subject to Community Infrastructure Levy (contributions towards transport/health/schools etc for the local area).
Out of interest we compared the approved 5 unit application to the proposed 6 unit and you can see how tiny Flat 4 on the approved application will be (left picture, first floor). By wanting an additional unit, they are having to replicate this design, meaning a tiny unit on both floors in the new layout.
We would love to have seen the layout for 14 units! Unfortunately, it is normally all about money and not about quality of living for new residents.
Left: approved 5 bedroom units, showing 2 on the ground floor and 3 on the first floor
Right: proposed 6 bedroom units, showing 3 on the ground floor and 3 on the first floor