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Charminster scheme gets go-ahead but for foreign students only
4:00pm Thursday 18th October 2012 in Latest
A LONG-RUNNING row over a contentious student block in Charminster has finally been resolved following assurances that it will only provide a home for foreign students.
The Malmesbury Park Road block was originally granted permission on the priviso that rooms could only be occupied by students from the Kings School of English.
This restriction helped ease residents’ fears that the development of small bedrooms, with shared facilities, would either become a “doss house” or an unwieldy university student block.
Last month the council’s planning board was recommended to remove the reference to foreign students from Kings School of English.
But concerned ward councillors Carol Ainge and Mark Anderson joined forces with local residents to oppose the change in conditions.
Objectors won a reprieve after civic planners instructed their enforcement officer to investigate claims that agreed plans for the interior layout had been flouted.
But planning consultant Ken Parke, representing Malmesbury Estates, insisted that the development would be “a significant enhancement to the area,” adding the bank was having a problem with conditions restricting accommodation.
At Monday’s planning board meeting members were reassured by a Kings Colleges management plan stating that Kings School of English had taken a lease for the block.
The residence will be supervised by live-in wardens with an in-house catering team and an evening curfew for under-18s.
The management plan added: “The revised lay-out with communal dining area facilitates supervision of the students and actively encourages student integration.”
The scheme was granted, by ten votes to one, after it was agreed to restrict the block to foreign students, not only Kings School of English students.