Winch and Blatch and Houses in Bulmer Road

B/13/00793/LBC  Winch and Blatch First floor café

While the prospect of a first floor café overlooking Market Hill is attractive and we fully support it there are accessibility issues which can only be resolved by the provision of the earlier proposed bridge providing a link to the accessible floor in the newer building. Access solely by stairs will prevent use by wheelchair users and discourage potential older customers particularly those who use scooters to get as far as Market Hill. Provision of an accessible toilet at this level is rather meaningless in the present circumstances and the firm should make clear its long term strategy. As to the toilet the layout should follow Part M and site the wash basin to be reachable from the wc.

B/13/00917/OUT  Residential development Brundon Lane/ Bulmer Road

This scheme is very similar to the earlier proposals, but the style is now a fairly interesting pastiche vernacular rather than the earlier and more interesting modern one. The terrace following the road frontage is as before a more fitting extension of the existing and newish housing nearer the junction at the foot of Ballingdon Hill and we still prefer this to the more suburban layout of Bush Grove. There are now two access points into the development rather than one to reduce the traffic impact. We appreciate that residents nearby are still opposed and we do agree that the developers should engage with them. Houses opening direct off the pavement are in our view preferable to meaningless small patches of front garden, as witness other recent developments in the town. We suggest the model should be Ballingdon Street with its wide pavements rather  than the narrow ones of Cross Street. There should be complete prohibition of on-street parking to both sides along the development frontage. Pedestrian access from the foot of Ballingdon Hill towards the existing housing is pretty poor and we suggest a planning/highways strategy to improve this along with the resiting of both the oil fuel depot and the recycling centre in the interests of both present and future residents.

We are concerned that the familiar problem of intrusive wheelie bins close to each house has not been resolved and similarly most residents would prefer provision for cycles to be securely within their own property than in some communal and vulnerable space.

B/13/00921/FHA  8 Beaconsfield Close

We commend this proposal to make this 3 level property accessible to a wheelchair. We would point out that circulation at bedrooms level needs to be thought through to ensure space to turn and enter the bedroom – the existing 1000mm passage width will not suit wheelchair turning.

As with Winch and Blatch accessibility issues should be resolved at planning stage and not left to the mercies of Building