Safety concerns over plans for Blackwater 'eyesore'By Laura Nightingale
February 14, 2013
PLANS to turn an “eyesore” at the entrance of Blackwater into a training centre for door security staff has resulted in road safety concerns.
Despite an attempt to fill the empty building in Vicarage Road, objectors believe access to the proposed centre would be dangerous.
The building, once home to an aquarium, bike store and pottery painting shop and close to the busy A30 and The Meadows roundabout, has been vacant for 12 months.
Safety concerns have been raised over the risk trainers and trainees would face trying to enter or exit the site, which lies directly off the town’s main road.
Brian Blewett, councillor for Hart District and Blackwater and Hawley town, said: “This corner is a very dangerous corner off the A30.
“Cars slip around that corner quite fast and more cars will be coming in and out of the car park than ever before.
"An accident is waiting to happen. They would be hit sideways when leaving the car park.”
The applicant, Pavilion Security Services, which has offices in Camberley, wants to move to the Blackwater site as it would provide more space to undertake the training of staff for shops, pubs and clubs in the area.
It does not want to alter the exterior of the building but has suggested undertaking alterations inside to form classrooms and office space.
Blackwater and Hawley Town Council is objecting to the planning application. Chairman Adrian Collett described the site as an “open muddy corner and a dreadful eyesore on the edge of Vicarage Road”.
Speaking on behalf of the applicant, agent David Dilley, of Archcad Architectural Service in Hartley Wintney, said: “It is considered that the application of change of use to offices and training facilities in this location will suit the area as the location is mainly a commercial area."
Hart District Council’s planning team expects to make a decision on the application by the end of February.
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