Sutton North Lib Dem Councillors

Cllrs Ruth Dombey, Marlene Heron and Steve Penneck working hard for Sutton North all year round Learn more

Planning application to redevelop Helena House

by Ruth, Marlene, and Steve on 20 April, 2020

Planning application No DM2020/00476 has been received to redevelop Helena House, opposite Sutton Green. The proposal is for the demolition of the existing building and the erection of a part-5, part-8 storey building to provide two commercial/retail units on the ground floor with 41 flats above, with cycle and bin storage, disabled parking and a secured communal courtyard.

This is an important site, opposite Sutton Green, and at the northern entrance to the town centre.

The planning application can be viewed here. Any comments on the application may be made through the Council’s planning website here.  Comments should be made a soon as possible.

The new development would have two commercial/ retail units on the ground floor, on either side of the entrance to the flats. 

There is a proposed vehicle service layby at the front. Other vehicles would access from the rear.  There is a small residents’ amenity area at the rear, and a rooftop terrace on the 5th floor.  There is some limited planting and benches at the front (at each side). It would be faced in red brick, and the flats would have balconies.

There would be no parking for residents in the flats, apart from four disabled spaces.  There are 82 cycle spaces.  The application includes a Travel Plan for residents.  Residents will be asked to sign an agreement which prevents them from applying for residents parking permits. 

The flats are mostly one bed, with a small number of two and three bed.  They would all be at market rent.

Planning permission for a change of use of the existing building from office use to 38 flats was refused in 2016. The building was formerly a DWP Job Centre, but has been empty for some years and is currently an eyesore.

A public exhibition of the development proposals was held in October 2019.  At that stage the developer was proposing a nine storey block.  The current proposal is an improvement on that originally proposed, and while we welcome development of this site, we still have the following concerns:

  • The proposed block is too tall – the current building is only six storeys, and the Local Plan puts a six-storey limit on the site.
  • There needs to be a good mixture of flats including some ‘affordable‘ units.

As your ward councillors we have ‘de-delegated’ this proposal, requiring it to come to the Planning Committee for decision, rather than be decided by Planning Officers. Currently the Planning Committee is not meeting due to Coronavirus, though we expect this to change in the future.

   3 Comments

3 Responses

  1. John says:

    Should be only affordable housing and not to be rented out for 10 years to stop people buying them just as a rental

  2. Jane vincent says:

    More retail units that will remain shut! Sutton already has to be the worst shopping centre around!
    Do not need anymore flats to be brought up by large corporate companies to stay empty!
    Sutton has been destroyed by the council over the years by our greed

  3. Stayton Resident says:

    And just where will those who have cars or their visitors dump them – in the free to congest Stayton Road causing more stress and problems for residents who are paying council tax for even less service! MAKE STAYON ROAD RESIDENTS PERMIT for everyone’s fairness and safety!

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