September 30, 2014
Plans for new Highbridge flats and shops win council backing

Plans for a new development of ten flats and two shops in the centre of Highbridge have been given a 'thumbs up' by town councillors this week despite concerns about parking and retail viability.

Mead Realisations wants to build the new building - comprising of eight 2-bedroom flats and two 1-bedroom flats - on the corner of the former cattle market site and next to the soon-to-be-refurbished Highbridge Hotel.

Councillors on the Town Council's Planning Applications Committee gave the proposals lukewarm backing at their meeting last night (Monday).

Cllr Andy Brewer said: "While the building is in keeping with future planned developments and is sympathetic with the area, my concern is that there's no onstreet parking. Customers at the proposed shops won't be able to park outside and the nearest parking is a good distance away in Bank Street."

Cllr Paul Young added: "It doesn't seem like a viable location for retail outlets. If Mead Realisations fails to find businesses to fill the units then I can see them wanting to put more flats there in their place and that would be a concern."

Cllr Peter Burridge-Clayton added: "The development would create new jobs and we can stipulate that the retail units must be retained in the future."

In its application, Mead Realisations says the development will "provide additional employment opportunities for Highbridge in the form of two commercial ground floor units and provide new and affordable homes for Highbridge."

It also says the development will "provide sustainable development through the use of a brownfield site; create a legible and distinctive addition to Highbridge; Improve connections between development sites and community facilities; Enhance the ecology of the site; and secure a viable future for the derelict, vacant, brownfield site."

Town councillors voted not to object against the scheme, however Sedgemoor District Council will have the final say on whether the application goes ahead.

Comments from interested parties can be sent to the authority before the deadline of October 17th. The application reference is 11/14/00087.


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