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Plans for secure facility in Darland rejected by councillors

By Jade Edwards

Controversial plans to convert a family home into a secure facility have been rejected.

Purecare Care Homes applied change the 11-bedroom house in Hunters Way West, Darland, into a centre for patients with mental health problems.

The proposals included installing a 3m high security boundary enclosure, gates and CCTV.

The property in Hunters Way West, Darland. Pic: Google Maps
The property in Hunters Way West, Darland. Pic: Google Maps

The facility would have looked after patients from secure hospitals and helped them reacquaint themselves with daily living with help from nurses, psychiatrists and social workers.

The council received 110 letters of objection to the plans alongside five separate petitions signed by 1,155 people.

Their concerns included parking problems, safety and security risks for elderly residents and parents with young children, and congestion.

Cllr Asha Saroy (Con), who represents Watling ward, also objected.

She said: “Darland is a residential area and it is strongly felt this change of use is inappropriate and is not right for the character of the area.”

Cllr Asha Saroy
Cllr Asha Saroy

She said consultation by the applicant had been poor.

She added: “They did not approach the local community at the beginning about this application and it has caused ill-feeling.

“Reports that were provided post-submission have done little to build relations with the community.”

Councillors refused the application at last Wednesday night’s planning committee meeting.

The planning report stated the tall boundary enclosure, gates, secure garden, and CCTV would make the premises look “isolated, hostile and out of character” in the family-dominated close knit residential area.

It added that there were “potential negative repercussions” associated with the proposed use of the building such as anti-social behaviour of future residents.

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