Conservatives vote through another major development in town centre

February 26, 2008 10:00 PM
The Beeches - how it will look

London Road - how it will look

Planning permission for a four-storey care home for up to 109 elderly residents is set to be built in London Road on a site currently occupied by just four houses. Sunrise Senior Living, a US company who will be charging a minimum of £700 per room per week, now aims to open the home within the next 2 years.

The home was approved by the Conservatives despite disagreement between Sunrise and Brentwood, Billericay and Wickford PCT regarding the number of elderly care beds available in the borough. A number of large GP practices, including Beechwood Surgery and Rockleigh Court Surgery, had also objected to the proposal.

Cllr Karen Chilvers, Lib Dem councillor for the area, said:

"I have absolutely no problem with having a care home on the site and I do agree that more elderly care beds are needed. However, the size and scale of this development is totally overwhelming. The four houses to be demolished are set right back and hidden from the road, but this will sprawl right out into London Road. A smaller building, with fewer storeys, would have been much more appropriate, given the over-development in Brentwood West.

"It is wholly inappropriate to press ahead with these plans without the full support of the local PCT and GP community. However, my suggestion that further consultation should be undertaken with local health care professionals was quickly dismissed by the Chair of Planning. Unfortunately, with such a large Tory majority, another development was railroaded through"