Wednesday, 28 June 2017 14:43

Portsmouth Planning Policy Encourages Unplanned Behaviours

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Portsmouth Planning Policy Encourages Unplanned Behaviours


A much more balanced month for PCC planning than it was last – some decisions overturned on appeal and some confirmed. Obviously we are focused on the private residential lettings which come before the committee but in our area of focus, as usual all of the activity appears to be conversion of existing HMO’s of one type or another to larger HMO’s. A logical outcome of the Article 4 direction which is having the effect of increasing density of HMO dwellers in areas with HMO’s rather than reducing them as was intended.

Read on for specific cases….



Victoria Road North – change of use from C3 to C3/C4 was approved but “With regard to the review of the SPD on HMOs" the council planning officer reported that "a report was due to go to the next Planning, Regeneration & Economic Development portfolio meeting in the new municipal year, to seek a 6 week consultation before a further report was brought back for adoption/amendment of the policy”

Jersey Road – change of use from C3 to C3/C4 refused because “would, as a result of the proposed layout of the ground and first floors in relation to the shared communal areas; fail to provide an adequate standard of living accommodation for future occupiers as they would be exposed to unacceptable and elevated levels of noise and disturbance, representing a poor form of development that would be contrary to the principles of protection of 7 residential amenity as outlined in the National Planning Policy Framework and Policy PCS23 of the Portsmouth Plan.”

103 Manners Road – change of use from C4 to large HMO refused for same reasons as Jersey Road.

26 Manners Road – ditto but granted

Queens Road – change of use from C4 to large HMO conditionally granted


Cabmans Rest – change of use from pub to large HMO, rejected by PCC but granted on appeal

Detail : The main issue considered in allowing this appeal was whether the proposal would provide acceptable living conditions for the future occupiers in regards to room sizes, access to ablution facilities and waste storage. The applicant proposed five bedrooms and three W/C's at ground floor with six bedrooms and three bathrooms at first floor. The inspector offered the view that all eleven rooms varied in size but satisfied the minimum floor areas required for single bedrooms as identified in the Nationally Described Space Standard (March 2015). Having regarded ablution facilities the inspector opined "Based on an individual occupying each bedroom, this would equate to each WC being shared by around two people, with the shower and bathroom facilities each shared between roughly three people. Therefore, the number of people sharing the ablution facilities would not be unusually large. The level of sharing of such facilities would not be dissimilar to that commonly experienced by occupiers of single family dwellings." Having examined the evidence, the inspector offered the view that the proposal would not result in an over-intensive use of the building as it would not provide unusually cramped or restricted living accommodation and that given the nature of the previous use, the proposal would not result in a significant increase in noise, disturbance, anti-social behaviour or crime.

Nelson Terrace – change of use from C3 to C4, rejected by PCC and also refused on appeal
Merton Road – change of use from C3 to large HMO, rejected by PCC but granted on appeal



Last modified on Wednesday, 28 June 2017 17:38

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