FRESH plans have been submitted for a house in multiple occupation (HMO) in Wrexham.
Earlier this month the Leader reported how a planning application to change the use of a property in Pen y Bryn to a 10-bedroom HMO was refused by Wrexham Council’s planning committee – following which Arran Pritchard, proprietor at Pritchard Property, submitted an appeal against the decision to the Planning Inspectorate.
Committee members decided to refuse the plans after they agreed the development would be contrary to the authority’s S5 policy to protect district shopping centres. Offa ward councillor Alun Jenkins told the Leader he hoped the Planning Inspectorate would uphold the refusal and not allow the shop to be taken away.
On July 18 Wrexham Council received a separate application to turn the same property into an eight-bedroom HMO, this time retaining the shop – which accommodates a graphic design business – on the ground floor.
Mr Pritchard told the Leader: “The appeal has gone in and I intend to proceed with this first and foremost.
“The planners since contacted me to explain the committee would have little ground to refuse an application if it kept the shop element, that I have a free second go, and one would not prejudice the other. So I thought I have nothing to lose by doing so.”
Cllr Alun Jenkins told the Leader he was pleased to see the new plans include the retention of the shop, but he still had concerns about the layout of facilities on land to the side of the property, the ownership status of which the planning committee had heard was in dispute.
He said: “I am minded to object again. It is to be welcomed that the shop is to be retained. That was the main reason it was refused.
”But there are still questions about the possibility of being able to develop the shop and the HMO – and to provide the facilities required. Parking is also a problem in that area.”
A design and access statement submitted with the latest plans states: “The ground floor will be the shop. Separated off from this there will be the HMO with two bedrooms and a kitchen on the ground floor, six bedrooms and a kitchen on the first floor, with each bedroom having its own private en-suite.”
The document also states that outside there will be a 1,100 litre bin storage and cycle parking area.
Regarding the appearance of the property, it adds: “Externally, there will be alteration to reinstate the window to match existing at the rear of the property, which is currently the kitchen.
“The existing shop front and rear signs will be blanked out or replaced with the signs of the new business, which is as yet unknown.”