PRESS RELEASE: COMMITMENT TO MAINTAINING THE HIGH STREET
Published: 30 June 2021
As a Statutory Consultee to Sevenoaks District Council (SDC), Sevenoaks Town Council were recently consulted on a Planning Application proposing the partial conversion of Barclays, 80 High Street from a commercial to mixed use consisting of six self-contained flats and one commercial unit. The full application, including its Planning History, Constraints and Documents are available to view on the Sevenoaks District Council’s Planning Portal, via this link.
The decline in the number of banking buildings in local high streets was noted by the Councillors during discussion of this application, with all in agreement that preserving their presence in Sevenoaks High Street will prevent accessibility of banking services being lost to those either without access or the confidence to use online banking.
Furthermore, the Town Council wished to emphasise that, while they support and welcome more housing towards the Town Centre, they remain committed to maintaining Sevenoaks High Street as a fully serviced and viable commercial space that meets all the needs of the community.
On Monday 28th June 2021, the Town Council resolved to recommend refusal of this application based on the following grounds:
• Loss of retail space in a key commercial area, which is against current District Council Planning Policy
• The flats will have inadequate daylight and sunlight and will likely be overlooked by the neighbouring property.
Due to current planning legislation during the pandemic, this recommendation was made via a “Working Party” of the Council and signed off under delegated powers by the Chief Executive. It is through the Working Party that Sevenoaks Town Council is endeavouring to continue with its day-to-day activities, including providing recommendations to the District Council on planning applications.
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