Appeal win for medical centre plan rejected by councillors

WORK on a new medical centre in North Tyneside is to go ahead after all now the developers behind it have won a planning appeal.

The plan was drawn up to cope with an increase in patients at Monkseaton Medical Centre.

The existing centre, built in 1985, was designed to cater for 4,500 patients, but the Cauldwell Avenue clinic now has almost 8,800 on its books.

Plans were put together for a two-storey centre, including a pharmacy, with the number of parking spaces increased from ten to 37.

However, the proposals were rejected by North Tyneside Council in November because of the scale and size of the building and the potential increase in traffic.

Planning officers had recommended approval, but their advice was rejected by councillors.

The developers appealed against that decision and have now won their case, as well as being awarded costs.

Jon Tweddell Planning, acting on behalf of MediX Property and Ansley Developments, argued that it would deliver a high-quality building with extra parking.

Jon Tweddell, managing director of the Amble firm, said: “The architects, Gateshead’s Koru Property Services, and developers spent a lot of time and effort putting together a planning application and were able to gain the support of the council’s planning and highways officers.

“For the council to then refuse permission is unacceptable and unreasonable and explains why the costs claim was successful.”

A council spokesperson said: “Planning decisions are guided by a statutory and democratic process.

“While officers can make recommendations on individual applications, the final decision is for elected members to make.”

The authority received 15 objections to the project, as well as a petition signed by 50 residents.

Their concerns included loss of view and privacy for nearby residents and a potential increase in traffic and parking problems.

The new centre is expected to be built later this year.