Continuing ‘saga’ of Beach Road car park

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The Report of Strategic Director (Place) headed ‘Town Centre North redevelopment proposal’ and presented at the Cabinet meeting on 17 April 2018 said

“The initial reports on viability of the scheme indicated that the council should ring–fence, where possible, the capital receipts or potential development opportunity presented by certain sites in the periphery of the Borough of Poole. Following further work to understand the development opportunities the Council is asked to approve that the development value or receipt from Constitution Hill and Beach Road Car park (part) are ring-fenced to Town Centre North to help fund the public uses and supporting infrastructure.”

Rumours of Council plans to sell-off of the Beach Road car park have circulated for some years.

22 September 2003  – The Minutes the Alderney, Branksome East and West and Canford Cliffs Area Committee meeting held at the Haven Hotel on 22 September 2003 record that one of our Ward Councillors at the time, the late Cllr Neil Sorton “was appalled at the idea of the proposal to sell off part of the car park.  He felt that the Council could do more to direct people to Beach Road to increase usage.” and the following resolution was passed

AGREED that the Council should not consider selling off any part of the Beach Road Car Park in this important conservation area and that officers should look into utilising the car park by providing additional signs and the creation of additional accesses to make it more user friendly.

For:     Councillors Mrs Deas, Dugdale, Mrs Hillman, Mrs Lavender, Meachin, Pethen and Sorton.

Abstention:  Councillors Eades and Trent.

More recently…

12 April 2016 –  Cabinet Forward Plan includes item *Proposals for Beach Road Car Park DATE TO BE ADVISED”

05 December 2016 – Bob Reid & I were invited to meeting with officers and Cllr May Haines to discuss Beach Road car park draft Development Brief.  I expressed the view that this was ‘selling off the family silver’ for a short term financial gain, or finding sites to meet Poole’s projected housing needs?  The site should be used for Retirement flats rather than open-market flats which are unlikely to be affordable for Poole residents downsizing and releasing family homes. Dorset is a retirement destination for people from the London area who can afford high property prices.

31 August 2017 – Letter from Council addressed to all residents living within 200m of Beach Road car park informing them that it is “seeking removal and/or modification of the land forming the Beach Road car park to provide for new residential properties to be built thereon subject to planning permission to be granted.”

25 October 2018 –  Objectors notified by Upper Chamber, Lands Tribunal that the Council has informed the Tribunal that it has decided to withdraw its application. Objectors have been invited to make an application for their costs. The council will be allowed to comment on any application made and the tribunal’s registrar will decide what costs, if any, should be awarded.

The Association will remain vigilant.