Premier Inn, Highcliffe

New Plans Submitted – 24 July

Today it was reported in The Echo that new plans are under consideration, which avoid the detrimental effect on the oak trees. Here is a paragraph from the impact statement:
Plans to extend the hotel have been prepared, informed by an earlier tree survey. An earlier application for an extension (Ref: 8/18/3564/FUL) was refused on the grounds of the proposed extension would impact negatively on two protected oak trees. As a result, the proposed extension has been redesigned to eliminate both immediate and long-term impact on these trees. The revised extension is smaller and leaves a clear gap (5 metres) between the new extension and the existing trees. Here is a link to all of the new planning documents, and two relevant ones are below, reduced in size. There are no new photographs, as so far nothing has changed!
Click for a larger image, around 250K
The new plans. Compare with the original, below.

Plans Rejected – 24 April

It was in today’s Echo that the plans have been rejected because  of the damage it might cause to two mature oak trees. Here is the article. All of the BCP Planning information can be read here. I have not quoted the Echo, which is linked above. However, here is the text of the refusal document:
Two Oak trees, that are the subject of Christchurch Council (1955 No. 71), Tree Preservation Order 1955 are located adjacent to the site. These trees make a positive contribution to the area’s verdant character and sylvan cover within the local landscape. A harmonious relationship will not be created with these trees and the proposed three-storey building. The level of unreasonableness is increased by bringing the built-form closer to these Oaks. There is already pressure to severely prune these trees in order to create a suitable distance between them and the proposed building and this gap will require regular pruning works. It is therefore inevitable that there be future pressure to either severely prune or fell these trees. Insufficient consideration has been given to the constraints placed on this site by these protected trees. The development is contrary to Policies HE2 and HE3 of Christchurch and East Dorset Local Plan 2014.

There are six months in which an appeal can be lodged, so it is a case of wait and see.

As reported in the printed Christchurch Times, 21 February 2019, a plans have been submitted to the Council for a ‘3 storey, 18 bedroom hotel extension and associated works.’ This application can be viewed here. There would be a link from the new to the existing building, and its capacity would increase to 79 bedrooms. Sadly, there would be a loss of one parking space, reducing the capacity to a mere 100! Click the images to see the site plan. The extension is indicated at the bottom of the plan. As you can see, it is unlikely to be intrusive,
Click for the pdf
To see what it will look like, the elevations are here. Also a pdf, opening in a new window. Finally, a photograph of the site, at the back of the building. As you may understand, I am quite in favour of this, as the accommodation is definitely needed in Highclliffe. In the last year I have met three people who couldn’t find anywhere to stay! Remember, too, that The Rothesay will be closing. That page is here.