BA objects to Planning Application for Hostel in Southampton Row

Backdated from previous BA website

The BA has objected to the planning application by St Mungo’s for an further 5 year extension to the temporary planning permission to operate a hostel in the listed building at 2-6 Southampton Row. Click title to see full details…..

2-6 SOUTHAMPTON ROW
LONDON WC1

APPLICATION FOR CONTINUED USE AS A TEMPORARY HOSTEL

Application for planning permission: 2003/3360/P
Application for listed building consent: 203/3376/L
Case file: M15/22/E


The Bloomsbury Association object to this application and wish to make the
following comments.

1. The proposal is for the continued use of the buildings as a hostel for
single, homeless people operated by St Mungos Community Association. This
will complement hostels that already exist close by on Parker Street, at
Princes Circus and Endsleigh Street, many of whose residents are drug
addicts and for whom we understand that Œdrug services¹ are offered in the
hostels. A considerable drug traffic flow has become established on the
routes that link the hostels and it is on these routes that much drug
dealing takes place. This impacts severely on the local economy and on the
amenity of the residential communities in Bloomsbury.

2. The proposal is located in an area where there is a national street
market in class A drugs which is exacerbated by Council policies which have
sought to locate a concentration of facilities to serve drug users in the
area. It will create a further attraction that will inevitably be a target
for drug dealers. Drug related crime and anti-social behaviour in the area
is now at a level that the police are no longer able to control, and the
potential for crime and risk to community safety should be planned out, not
planned in.

3. If, as Camden Social Services claim, they are being successful in
removing ‘out of town’ addicts and beggars from the streets and returning
them to their place of origin, then there is no need for this facility as it
only acts as a magnet for them. Without exception, every cash machine,
supermarket and cafe in the area extending from here to St Giles Circus is
targeted by street addicts whose open use of drugs and threatening behaviour
intimidates tourists and shoppers. If this cannot be controlled by effective
policing, we would like the Council to adopt a policy to limit the
facilities that attract them.

4. The buildings are of special architectural or historic interest and are
listed Grade II*. Contrary to Council policy and government guidance given
in PPG15, this proposal offers nothing to enhance them.

For these reasons we strongly urge the Council not to approve the
application.

We would be grateful if you would let us know of any further modification to
the application; the decision, if it is to be decided under delegated
powers, or the meeting date if it is to be decided by Committee.

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