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Temporary rooms plan for care home

HOMELESS families from Worthing could be accommodated in a former Bognor Regis care home.


Lucky Gohler, of UK Car Park Management, has applied for planning permission to change the use of the building to emergency housing.


He has asked Arun District Council to create six bedsits, eight one-bed flats and two two-bed flats in the redundant premises in Aldwick Road.


It was previously used for 22 cluster flats as the Aldwick Rest Home with a kitchen, office and recreational room.


Mr Gohler’s planning agent, Stuart Paine, says in a statement with the planning application: “We are proposing 16 self-contained emergency housing flats. Each self-contained flat has been considered to meet the Arun local plan space standards as much as possible within the constraints of the existing building.


“Each flat contains facilities including: hob, sink and draining board, 600mm food preparation worktop space, hot and cold water supply, electrical sockets, extractor fan, waste bin, fire blanket, food/utensil storage and a fridge freezer.


“We are proposed two accessible flats on the ground-floor.”


A planning history submitted with the application shows the premises – two substantial mid-terrace houses – were converted from a private hotel to a rest home in 1978.


The appearance of the building will stay largely the same in the proposals by Mr Gohler.


His plan has been backed by Steve Hay, the private sector options officer at Worthing and Adur councils, who has told Arun: “My role is to acquire accommodation for people whom the council have a duty to accommodate.


“Not only would this fulfil a need for self-contained accommodation, it would, in my opinion, be a much better and more suitable alternative to shared accommodation and less disruptive to the local area.


“Following the approval of the scheme, we anticipate working with the proprietor to provide good quality, suitable accommodation to people with housing need.


“We will be working closely with the landlord to ensure that the property is effectively managed.”


Mr Paine said he and Mr Gohler believed the latest plans were a better option for the site than the bedsit scheme they had originally proposed.


“We believe that emergency housing is a better fit for the site than the house in multiple occupation proposals originally discussed and have been in discussion with the neighbouring local authority at Adur and Worthing, who have a desperate need for emergency accommodation.


“The relative urban location of the building would bring its own level of disturbance regardless of the use of the property.


“However, we believe that the proposed self-contained flats will lead to an overall reduction in noise and disturbance to that of full-time staff attending to a residential care home. No pets will be allowed in the premises, removing the possibility for barking dogs etc,” he states.

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