Residents have hit out at plans to demolish a ‘much-loved’ historic building and replace it with new homes.
Chesterfield Borough Council is set to give the green light for The Shrubberies building, on Newbold Road, which was built in 1876 and used as a nurses home in the 20th century, to be demolished and replaced with 13 new properties.
The building is currently derelict and was last used as an office building for the NHS Primary Care Trust.
It has been suggested the building has a covenant in place protecting it from being demolished and tree preservation orders.
At least a dozen people living nearby have raised concerns of the proposed felling of the trees, the impact it will have on their privacy, the potential increase in traffic and loss of light.
In a letter to the borough council regarding concerns over light, Audrey Johnson, of nearby Cobden Road, said: “As a disabled 76-year-old this would deny me the pleasure of sitting in my back garden with my dog - one of the few pleasures I still have in life.
“The Shrubberies, or ‘Matrons’ as it was formally known, is a much-loved building and held with great affection by the local community. To see its loss would be a great shame.”
Fellow Cobden Road resident, Matt Barnett, wrote: “The proposed development still intends to destroy multiple mature trees, including a protected tree which is at the rear of my property. The tree officer’s guidance that recommends this 20ft tree is to be relocated is an unrealistic suggestion and therefore the development continues to plan to fell this tree.”
A letter by Chesterfield MP Toby Perkins says he has been contacted by a constituent who believes the site includes a covenant saying the building should not be knocked down and that there are tree preservation orders on the trees on the site.
Planning documents state the building was constructed on the site during the late 19th century, originally as two attached properties. Mid 20th century ordnance survey maps indicate that it was a nurses home.
The documents state: “Whilst the existing building has merit in its form and appearance, the current condition includes one building which has been adapted to serve different uses over time. This may provide undue constraint to re-develop the brownfield site to its most suitable form, making best use of the site.
“The existing access is well positioned for the site, and can be suitably retained. Existing trees provide some constraint to the site but should be retained where they provide public amenity at Newbold Road.”
A final decision will be made on Monday, January 9 at a planning committee meeting at Chesterfield Borough Council.