Chessington District Residents’ Association
The Cap In Hand was sold to a developer and in February 2017 permission was granted for the conservatory to be demolished, and the pub retained on the ground floor and basement. The upper floor was to be converted to four 1 bedroom flats with roof terraces or balconies. They were also to build three 2 bedroom houses, one 2 bedroom flat and one 1 bedroom flat. The project would not commence until interest was shown in the pub.
As there had been no interest, in May 2018 another planning application was put forward which proposed the complete demolition of the pub, to be replaced with 38 units up to 7 storeys high with parking for 14 cars. It is not surprising there had been no interest in the first application as it was reported that the rent for the pub was £100,000 per year!
In June 2018 the South of the Borough Committee Meeting in the Hook Centre was packed with all seats taken and many people standing, as this development was on the agenda. There was a united feeling against the proposal with many reasons listed. The result of the meeting was put forward to the Development Control Committee (DCC) for their consideration at their next meeting.
In October 2018 we reported that the DCC had turned down the application because not only was the developer not justifying the loss of the pub, but the proposal was not in keeping with the area. Also the lack of amenity space meant the accommodation would be sub-standard.
With the pub now in a more dilapidated condition, the developer has put in a revised application. A request has been made by Councillor Dunstone that this be brought to the South of the Borough Neighbourhood Committee for consultation. The council has notified the residents in the surrounding roads that the application has been submitted.
The revised design is not much different to the previous one. This time it is 39 units, 20 parking spaces and still 7 storeys high. If the previous application was rejected, then why have they virtually repeated the design? Maybe they saw the result of the 11 to 25 Leatherhead Road fiasco by the DCC and possibly thought they have a good chance that it will be passed.
It is still early days, so we can only hope that whilst they passed the four storey out of character building in Leatherhead Road, they have the courage to reject a seven storey one at the Ace of Spades.