ADRIAN OWENS - Conservative Parliamentary Spokesman, West Lancashire
Planning Rejection first step to a better heritage landmark
Ormskirk councillor and Conservative Parliamentary hopeful Adrian Owens today welcomes the decision of the planning committee to refuse planning permission for the conversion of the water tower on Tower Hill into 7 flats.
Adrian says “The flat conversion plan was always over-development and the resulting building would have blighted Ormskirk’s skyline for generations to come. The rejection of planning approval is a welcome first step to producing a better heritage landmark for Ormskirk.”
Adrian points to the recent establishment of a Building Preservation Trust with the support of English Heritage as a possible route to a more sympathetic renovation of the water tower.
“There is a possible role too for the district council. The council owns part of the land required for development and quite rightly for a commercial development wanted a full market price of £150,000 for this land. However, regulations introduced 4 years ago allow the council to dispose of land at less than full market value where this contributes to the environmental well-being of the area. If the tower were renovated through the new Building Preservation Trust, then it might be possible for the council to accept a reduced value for their land as part of a sympathetic heritage conversion of the tower. Given its highly prominent position on the Ormskirk skyline I certainly believe that this should be considered by the council if the Building Preservation Trust take their plans forward.” Adrian concludes.
Copyright © 2007, Adrian Owens - Revised -- 28/07/07
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