Planners urged to reject Regency-style homes on Hove seafront

Posted On 20 Jul 2011 at 11:42 am

Planners are being urged to turn down an application to build six townhouses on the site of the old Sackville Hotel on Hove seafront.

They will consider the application this afternoon (Wednesday 20 July) when they meet at Hove Town Hall.

A terrace of five of the seafront townhouses has been designed with a Regency façade, attracting support and opposition in almost equal measure.

The sixth sits behind the terrace and faces Sackville Gardens.

Hove Conservative MP Mike Weatherley wrote to John Barradell, chief executive of Brighton and Hove City Council, to object.

Mr Weatherley said: “As a huge fan of Brighton and Hove’s unique architecture, I am always keen to see quality new buildings, particularly in Hove and Portslade.

“I believe that this particular development really lets down the rest of the seafront.


“What is proposed does not blend in nor does it exude any sense of architectural integrity whatsoever.

“Fake old buildings may appear attractive in the short-term but I fear that the suppression of architectural innovation in such a dreary manner risks changing what Brighton and Hove is all about.”

The application to build the five-storey terrace has been made by businessmen Robert Webb, 63, and Michael Deol, 41, who also own the Revenge nightclub in Brighton.

The scheme includes an underground car park and has been designed by Alan Phillips Architecture, of South Street, Portslade.

A report to the council’s planning committee recommends refusing the plans.

It says: “The architectural style and detailing fails to preserve the specific architectural appearance and character of the Sackville Gardens Conservation Area.”

It also says that its scale and height are out of keeping with neighbouring properties, that it represents an inappropriate development and fails to respect the context of its setting.

The report also objects to the density of the proposed houses, saying that too few people will live there.

Changing seafront

The application is one of seven that look likely to continue the trend along the changing seafront road of replacing late Victorian and early Edwardian architecture, usually with higher density modern homes.

The seven applications, along Kingsway between the bottom of Hove Street and Station Road, Portslade, have either recently been approved or are due to be decided and include the following.

191 Kingsway, next to the old Sackville Hotel site, is a rundown house which was converted into 11 bedsits. A company called Castlemist, of Tongdean Avenue, Hove, wants to demolish the property and build a three-bedroom flat and eight two-bedroom flats. Castlemist, run by Peter and Tamar Coleman, has submitted plans which are due to be decided by the end of August.

Lawnscroft at 155 Kingsway, next to the Princes Marine Hotel, is derelict and uninhabitable. The owner Maria Holliday-Welch has applied to demolish the existing property and build a 34-bed nursing home, up to five storeys high, with a basement car park. The hotel was built on the site of an old nursing home. Ms Holliday-Welch’s application is also due to be decided by the end of August.

149-151 Kingsway, on the other side of the Princes Marine Hotel, was the subject of a decision last week. The large semi-detached houses are to be renovated and extended with loft conversions and are to be occupied as flats. Ms N Mutana, of Church Road, Hove, is behind the latest of a series of applications relating to the site. Last year the previous owner, a company called Stranmede, was served with an enforcement notice to improve the site. A new applications was submitted on Monday in relation to the planning conditions attached to 149 Kingsway, the property closest to the Hove Street junction.

331 Kingsway is the old Caffyns showroom and garage sold by the company for £4.5 million. In May Southern Housing was given permission to build 40 flats – 16 of them classed as “affordable” – in a four-storey building with a basement. The site will include offices and parking. A doctors’ surgery was included in the successful planning application but Brighton and Hove City Teaching Primary Care Trust has indicated that it will not be basing any GPs there. The site has been cleared ready for building to begin.

Britannia House is the old job centre site on the southern side of Kingsway next to the Blue lagoon pub and by Miller Bourne, the architects. Permission has been given for nine flats to be built on three storeys above the existing offices.

PortZED is a proposal for environmentally friendly homes at the eastern end of Shoreham Harbour next to the Britannia House site. The ZED stands for zero energy development. The application from BoHo Green is for 67 flats in six buildings on the southern side of Kingsway, although the postal address is in Basin Road North. The scheme includes helical wind turbines between the buildings and an array of solar panels, predominantly on the southern side. It also includes a visitor centre and green business hub. It has proved controversial with its neighbours in part because of its height and scale but also because of fears about the potential noise from the wind turbines. Opposition to the scheme is being led by the Kingsway and West Hove Residents Association. No date has yet been set to decide the application.

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