Design under fire

PUBLISHED: 09:58 26 January 2009 | UPDATED: 08:51 02 June 2010

ARCHITECTS who designed a four storey shops and flats complex to replace a former veterinary practice in Wisbech have been accused of not doing a good enough job. Fenland District Council claimed they had submitted a scheme that falls short of the aspira

ARCHITECTS who designed a four storey shops and flats complex to replace a former veterinary practice in Wisbech have been accused of not doing a good enough job.

Fenland District Council claimed they had submitted a scheme that "falls short of the aspiration of the site" and have refused it planning permission.

ATP Group, who drew up the scheme to replace the former Best Friends veterinary practice at 35 Bedford Street, was told their proposals would create a scheme that would "appear discordant in the street scene."

A report by Fenland planners added: "There is inadequate parking and turning for the site which will affect highway safety and due to lack of information there are inadequate crime prevention measures which will need resolving."

ATP had also failed to discuss possible affordable housing issues for the site- which would have included five flats and two shops at ground floor level- and had also failed to create a "Georgian emphasis" in line with recommendations.

In their refusal letter, Fenland Council says the scheme failed to appreciate the proximity of a listed building at 5 Lynn Road, and the "piecemeal development" could prejudice the Nene waterfront regeneration project.

ATP had provided a scheme which represented overdevelopment of the site and afforded inadequate provision for amenity space.

Refusal will be a blow for the site's owners, Best Friends Group, who have relocated to new premises in the town.

ATP had claimed the proposed four storey replacement incorporated "a featured facade- in period style- which includes projecting bays, capped and flanked by ballustered balconies."

However Fenland Council says the scheme "could compromise development potential of adjacent sites." They also suggested it should form part of a comprehensive proposal "and not a stand alone development.


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Wisbech Standard. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Wisbech Standard