Courier 11 May 2001 Page 3

Public concern over site plans

A Government Inspector [ Malcolm Lewis ] called in to settle the future of Telecom House in Tunbridge Wells is now considering the case.

The four-day public inquiry [ 1-4 May 2001 ], which included a site visit to Church Road and neighbouring streets [ York Road and up to Mount Ephraim ], ended on Friday [4 May 2001 ].
Developers Crest Nicholson and Southgate Developments for BT which owns the building, residents and borough council planning chiefs all gave evidence.
Proposals for 43 flats in four buildings, with basement car parking, led to residents' fear more cars would place a burden on surrounding roads. They also object to the number of homes and the loss of light, trees and privacy.

During the inquiry Archie Norman MP said the plans had "probably given rise to more public dissent and anxiety" than any other he had experienced during his four years as MP.

Peter Morse, chairman of The Telephone House Neighbours' Association, said: "Of concern to local residents is the fact that this future may not be for the better of the town and its immediate community."

Councillors of Culverden Ward, the MP for Tunbridge Wells

A guide through Tunbridge Wells Local Press since August 2000 - "The Telephone House Debacle"