PLANS to convert a Winsford house into a children’s home are to be discussed by councillors next week.

The proposals, from Mercia Children’s Services, would see The Hollies, on Clay Lane in Marton, change into a home to house up to four children and staff.

The bid has been recommended for approval by Cheshire West’s planning team, despite concerns over residential amenity, highway safety, loss of housing stock, and potential anti-social behaviour.

A pre-meeting report said: “In this case, the principle of the change of use is acceptable in this location. It is likely that the property would function in a way which is materially different from a traditional dwelling house, but not in a way which results in any harmful impacts, subject to a condition that only four children/young adults occupy the property at any one time. 

“In summary, it is reasonable to conclude that there would be no unacceptable highway safety or residential amenity impacts, or harm to the character and appearance of the area/fear of crime.”

However, some 17 letters of objection have been sent to the council on the bid, with one Whitegate resident writing: “The road outside the Hollies is on a blind bend which is a fast road regularly used by tractors/HGV's as well as cars and with no pavements, street lights, public transport or cycle tracks this represents a real safety issue. 

“The proposed staffing, shift patterns and extra journeys which would have to be undertaken to schools, activities, etc would undoubtedly increase noise and disturbance to the neighbours. 

“There are few other children in our village, hence there are no amenities in our vicinity, no youth clubs or a park for recreation. There is a distinct lack of opportunity for children and teenagers to start to have some independence, and build their confidence, perhaps by popping to a local shop, walking to school etc in our rural setting where we have no shops or schools within safe walking distance.”

CWAC’s planning committee will meet virtually at 4pm on Tuesday, March 2.