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FULL STORY: Bassetsbury Manor school plan approved
PROPOSALS to extend Bassetsbury Manor to enable a school to move in to the historic building have been given the go-ahead.
Wycombe District Council’s Planning Committee last night accepted the plan to extend and adapt the Grade II Listed Building on The Rye for Crown House Preparatory School to move in.
The 495sqm extension would house a hall, kitchen, storeroom, two additional classrooms and connections to the historic building.
The Manor building itself will be redecorated and adapted to accommodate the proposed extension.
The move was approved despite some strong concerns, particularly from Liberal Democrats, over parking problems.
The 17th century manor was sold to Crown House, currently based in London Road, in 2009 for £1m in a cash-saving drive by WDC.
Liberal Democrat leader Trevor Snaith, in particular, was unhappy with the proposal.
He said: "No one is in objection in principle to it being brought back into use but is what's going on around the site that's causing anxiety for people.
"It is totally unacceptable in a conservation area on the Rye which is effectively an area of outstanding natural beauty and is one of the few unspoiled areas of our town remaining.
“We need to see a building which is less bulk and is more in keeping with the current buildings.
“There have been numerous complaints about Crown house school where it is now, it's one of the hottest issues with regards to parents being responsible when it comes to picking up children.
He said Bassetsbury Lane already gets clogged up by parked cars.
“Schools need to start taking the responsibility for the problems with picking up children, it will be a travesty if it is allowed to go through as it is “I'm afraid we're not dealing with a good neighbour historically and I would like to see it's addressed going forward.”
However Tory Councillor Clive Harris disagreed and said that the parking situation should be improved by the plan.
“I can't really understand where he's coming from,” he said.
“There's plenty of parking we have to get out of the past and look to shape High Wycombe going forward whilst maintaining its heritage.
Cllr David Johncock, Conservative, said: “I can foresee a problem with the parking issue” while Lib Dem Cllr Ditta expressed fears over safety.
But Jean Teesdale, Conservative, said: “I can't agree with councillor Ditta that is dangerous, there may be a few young hooligans now and again but it's very rare.
“I think we can blend of old and new and make it something quite good.”
She said here is adequate parking there.
Cllr Ray farmer, Liberal Democrat, said: "It's lovely to see the building back in use but the parking issues have not been addressed."
Officials revealed the council has spoken with Fusion, which runs the Rye Sports Centre, regarding creating permits for its car park to encourage pick ups to take place at this point.
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