Plans to turn former Gwynedd care home into holiday hostel refused
Proposals to turn a former Gwynedd care home into a holiday hostel have been turned down.
An application to develop the vacant Penisarwaun Nursing Home was discussed by Cyngor Gwynedd yesterday (Monday, February 6).
The home closed suddenly in 2018 leaving families of the residents in shock and with only seven days to find their loved ones new homes.
Planning committee members said the proposals did not meet the council’s policies and lacked information regarding the amount of accommodation.
Concerns were also raised over parking and traffic issues, along with the potential for the holiday development to impact the local community.
The application by Rhys Griffith sought permission to change the use of the building from a care home to a serviced accommodation hostel for holiday use, together with warden’s living accommodation.
The existing single-storey property has two main wings linked in the centre by a flat roof.
The building includes 30 bedrooms, stores, kitchens, sitting rooms, a boiler room and bathrooms, as well as administrative/staff rooms.
No further information was submitted to confirm how many beds would be contained within each bedroom at the proposed hostel.
A new small lobby for the main entrance was the only addition proposed to the existing building.
Concerns were raised it could cause a “significant increase” in the density of the village site.
A planning reported stated: “This may in turn, significantly harm the character, image and nature of the local area and undermine the residential amenities of nearby residents on the grounds of noise nuisance.”
During a public consultation, the community council said the application for 30 rooms was “excessive”, which could “create difficulties and road hazard” on a winding narrow road.
Members said there was also the potential for an increase in noise impacting nearby residents.
The applicant said a warden would provide 24-hour supervision, minimising “the likelihood any of noise and disturbance arising”.
But members of the public objected to the potential increase in traffic and parking, as well as the scale of the development, noise impact, and and the amount of similar holiday accommodation in the area.
Planners considered the scheme was contrary to policies in the area’s Local Development Plan and that “insufficient information” was submitted regarding the number of beds proposed.
Planning officer Idwal Williams said: “As submitted the application was considered not acceptable based on the lack of compliance with policies and local and national planning guidance.
“The recommendation was to refuse the application.”
Objector Gareth Griffiths spoke on behalf of Penisarwaun residents, who feared it had the “potential to be the largest hostel in the local area by far”.
Committee members decided to follow the officer’s recommendation to refuse the scheme, which was passed by 11 votes, with one abstention and none against.
By Dale Spridgeon – Local Democracy Reporter
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