Childs Hill care home plans stall as Barnet Council threatened with judicial review

Residents of the area around Church Walk gather in opposition to proposals to demolish the vicarage

Residents of the area around Church Walk gather in opposition to proposals to demolish the vicarage and care home to make way for a four-storey development. Picture: Polly Hancock. - Credit: Archant

Proposals for a new care home in Childs Hill have been halted following a last-minute intervention from residents who threatened to take Barnet Council to the High Court if it approved the plans.

The council’s planning team deferred making a decision on an application from Central & Cecil Housing Trust (CCHT) to demolish care home Church Walk House in Church Walk and build a new four-storey home on September 12.

The decision was made after a resident at the meeting said key documents required by law had not been submitted by the developer.

Chartered surveyor Dean Clifford, 38, whose garden in Prospect Road faces the site, told the planning committee it could face a judicial review if it approved the plans without all the necessary application documents.

He told the Ham&High: “I said to the committee they were being asked to make a decision that would affect hundreds of people and if they granted this application on the applicant’s flawed and incomplete submission, there was a real risk of judicial review.

“The committee can’t lawfully decide on this application and that’s why they have adjourned it.”

A 100-strong group of residents in Prospect Road and Lyndale Avenue have set up the Save Church Walk campaign to oppose the plans. They believe the proposed building would destroy the neighbourhood’s “rural” feel.

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CCHT hopes to build a new four-storey home offering 53 one and two bedroom apartments, with a restaurant, hair salon, treatment rooms and gardens.

A spokesman said the application was “technically compliant” and the council’s planning team had “offered their confidence that all planning documents are in order”.

He said the firm is holding an open day for residents at Church Walk House on October 21.

A council spokesman said: “This item was deferred until the November west area planning sub-committee meeting.

“This will enable officers to review and address objections that were raised at the meeting which took place on September 12.”