Beechmoor Nurseries Whitchurch Road Christleton Chester Cheshire CH3 5QD – Demolition of existing buildings and redevelopment to provide an extra care retirement community comprising extra care accommodation (Use Class C2) together with associated communal facilities, access from Whitchurch Road, provision of vehicular and cycle parking, internal roads and footpaths, drainage infrastructure, open space and associated landscape works

The Chester Civic Trust have the following comments:

The site is an important gateway to the historic city of Chester and a high-quality scheme sensitive to the rural Green Belt location is essential.

The developers have made a good attempt to design an unusual and characterful set of buildings with appropriate materials and design motifs which will certainly produce striking development at a location which could be seen as an important and currently mediocre gateway site to Chester. The concept of a pedestrian ‘street’ to link the open spaces and the individual buildings is also welcomed.

Although we thought that the scheme is well thought out and sensitive to the constraints of the site, we are concerned particularly about the potential for noise pollution to residents from traffic and the height of the buildings.

The proposed height of the buildings will overshadow and squeeze the communal gardens and public square reducing a sense of openness and adversely affecting the well-being of residents. As this is a site in the Green Belt then it is important to retain a sense of openness as much as possible.

The overall quality of the scheme is being compromised by the number of apartments it is trying to fit on the site. A reduction in the number will allow buildings to be reduced in height, reduce overshadowing and overlooking, improve the amenity of the open spaces between the buildings and improve the overall quality.

The over-development of the site is also restricting the number of car parking spaces available for residents and visitors which is insufficient particularly when the frequent visits by care workers and volunteer drivers is taken into account many of which will require close and direct access to the apartments of residents with disabilities.

Relatives and friends of residents who wish to stay overnight will also struggle to find enough visitor spaces unless there is an agreement to allow visitors to use the adjacent park and ride facility.


Land Bordering Clifton Drive and Sealand Road Chester Cheshire – Erection of up to 150 dwellings and demolition of nos. 272, 274, 276 and 278 Sealand Road with all matters reserved except access

The Chester Civic Trust has the following comments on this application:

The Government has a planning policy that requires land for housing to be subject to a sequential test to avoid development on areas at serious risk of flooding. This policy has been followed in the preparation of the adopted CWAC Local Plan Part 1 where land at Wrexham Road has been allocated for housing development to provide for future housing needs for the City of Chester.
The application site is a floodplain and defined by the Environment Agency (EA) as Category 3 which is a site with a high probability of flooding. Furthermore, half of the site is Category 3b which is land designed to hold flood waters, to a considerable depth, at times of hydraulic stress.
The application site is allocated for open land uses in the Chester District Local Plan.
The site is not worthy of being treated as an exception to the sequential test, due to the severity of the flooding risk and the allocation of sufficient land for housing to meet future needs in the recently adopted Local Plan Part 1.
The development of this site would take up valuable flood water capacity so that in times of flood other properties in the area would be in greater danger of flooding. The effects of climate change are expected to increase the risk of flooding in the future.

Proposal: Change of use from offices to residential (10 1-bed and 2 2-bed apartments)

Civic Trust Comments: The Chester Civic Trust recognises that this is permitted development and the LA has no power to refuse on grounds of acceptable living space of the apartments. However it is obvious that the proposed apartments are too small for an acceptable standard of living and should full planning permission have been required then it should have been refused on these grounds and lack of sufficient car parking. The Civic Trust would encourage the Council to lobby the government to publish minimum space standards to be met in offices to residential permitted development.

Proposal: Display an A-Board directly below the studio on ground level, outside The Carphone Warehouse

civic Trust Comments:  The Civic Trust objects to this application because:

It would introduce unnecessary clutter in the street scene and be a hazard for pedestrians to negotiate particularly for those with limited mobility or sight.

It would be detrimental to the character of the conservation area and setting of listed buildings.

A hanging sign would be a more acceptable solution.

This application is for the Virgin Money outlet at the Cross

Proposal: 1 x Fascia, 1 x Projecting Sign, 1 x Opening Hours Vinyl, 1 x Frosted Vinyl Manifestation, 1 x Printed Vinyl Manifestation and 1 x ATM Header

Civic Trust Comments: The Civic Trust objects to this application due to the design of the proposed graphics in the window of the premises which are considered too dominant and out of character with the building and the historic street scene.


Proposed: The extension to and conversion of former offices to create 19 residential apartments (including demolition to the rear and alterations to the southern boundary

Civic Trust Objections:  The Chester Civic Trust does not consider that the revised application addresses the problems with the development of the previous application and therefore objects to the application on the following grounds:

Cramped living space
The floor space of the proposed apartments are below the standard normally expected in new development s of this type leading to a poor quality of life for residents. The cramped nature of the site and the city centre location should not be used as justification for unacceptable living conditions. If the space devoted to the open balconies was to be incorporated into internal floor space then this may alleviate the problem.

Lack of natural light.
Some of the rooms do not have any natural daylight and this is totally unacceptable for decent living conditions.

Other concerns.
The lack of any on site parking will only exacerbate on street parking nearby creating potential highway safety issues.

The security of residents should also be considered and the site designed against crime.

Since the last Executive the New Works Committee has successfully continued to deal with business on-line.

We have submitted objections to applications concerning:-

  • Storage facilities on Sealand Road: lack of landscaping on prominent site.
  • proposed replacement housing adjacent to Sainsbury’s roundabout: fear of future backland development causing traffic issues
  • Trafford Street student accommodation: proposed change of use to general residential. Opposed as a precedent and parking issues
  • Lorne Cottage, Louise St: development opposed – cramped site and very poor access; inappropriate use
  • A-board outside the Grosvenor Centre: contrary to policy and dangerous
  • Digital advertisement display, Hoole Road Bridge. Inappropriate and dangerous location
  • House in multile occupation (HMO), Whitchurch Road (retrospective); inappropriate to the area and contrary to policy.


The proposed hotel at the corner of Black Diamond Street, which we opposed, has unfortunately been approved by CWAC.


There is to be an appeal over refusal of planning permission for a proposed garden site house development on Curzon Park North. We opposed this application.


Two pre-application meetings with developers may take place in the next month concerning the Aparthotel on Nicholas Street and 2-8 Foregate Street (Lloyd’s Bank building).


John Herson

The Civic Trust objects to this application for the following reasons:

The proposed ‘A ‘ board would cause an obstruction on the pavement for pedestrians in this location and in particular could be a hazard for people with disabilities.

The board would also be an unattractive distraction from the historic and architectural character of the street scene and the conservation area as a whole.