Former Burnley care home could still be turned into student accommodation

Entrance to The Paddock off Highfield Avenue. Photo: Google.
Entrance to The Paddock off Highfield Avenue. Photo: Google.

An appeal has been launched after plans to turn a former Burnley care home into student accommodation were thrown out.

Government planning bosses will now decide whether proposals to convert the former care home at The Paddock in Highfield Avenue into a 20-bed student accommodation with communal living areas can go ahead.

Earlier this year, Burnley Council planners turned down the application because of inadequate parking and subsequent road safety issues.

The building was originally constructed as a family home but was used as a home for the elderly from the late 1980s.

Following an appeal in 1989, it was extended to provide six further bed spaces making a total of 16 bed spaces for residents.

Developers say the accommodation would provide rooms for use by UCLan students on placement at Burnley General Teaching Hospital.

They say nine car parking spaces will be provided as well as room for 12 bikes, while a parking strategy will be drawn up and included in the tenancy agreement for each student.

Simon Hardie, of Lancashire County Council’s highways department, said: “The appellant makes reference to the ability to control the parking by use of a Parking Management Strategy.

“It is not felt that this can be reliably enforced by the appellant, regardless of type of student who could be resident at the premises.

“The total ban of car usage by the majority of the residents could not be enforced as there may be occasions when the occasional use of a vehicle by a resident could have to be accommodated.

“Similarly any visitors to the dwelling would by default have to park on the road.

“The appellant also makes reference to the hospital trust shuttle bus as an alternative form of transport for the student nursing staff at which this establishment is to be marketed too.

“This shuttle service operates between 6-15am and 9-30pm half hourly Monday to Friday with a less frequent service on Saturdays and Sundays.

“Whilst this free shuttle service picks up and drops of within 400m of the application site this shuttle service it is obviously this is not suitable for any shift starting or finishing in Blackburn prior to 7am or after 9pm.

“It is to be expected that any nursing student that is living in Burnley could be required to attend Royal Blackburn Hospital depending upon which specialist ward they may be attached to.

“Additionally, it is believed that the classroom teaching element of courses based at Burnley General Teaching Hospital are to be transferred to the newly acquired former UTC building on Trafalgar Street near Burnley town centre.

“Currently there is under construction a new residential development for over 100 students adjacent to this site.”