A DEVELOPER is hoping to build retirement flats and cottages in Hindhead, on the site of Andrews shed and garden machinery business.

Renaissance Retirement has asked Waverley Borough Council for outline planning permission to build two buildings on the 1.5-acre Portsmouth Road site which will provide 37 sheltered apartments, plus 13 ‘retirement cottages’, along with basement parking, garages and parking spaces, bin stores and electric buggy and cycle stores.

Plans for the site were first unveiled by the developer at a public exhibition at Beacon Hill British Legion in June.

Andrews of Hindhead, first established in 1921, intends to relocate. John Andrews, proprietor of family-run garden machine business, told The Herald at the exhibition that there had been many approaches to buy the site.

The site would be sold to Renaissance Retirement if planning permission is gained. The proposed over-55s housing will consist of 11 one-bedroom flats, 26 two bedroom flats and 13 two bedroom cottages.

Renaissance Retirement says in its planning statement: “the site is in a highly sustainable location and is ideally situated for sheltered housing and retirement cottages for the elderly in a suburban area setting, being within easy walking distance of shops and facilities and with good access to a variety of forms of public transport”.

The main entrance to the site will be from the main road via Royal Huts Avenue using the existing access.

The apartment building will be over four storeys including accommodation within the roofspace and will comprise an L-shaped building which will front Portsmouth Road and Royal Huts Avenue.

The 13 retirement cottages will have two storeys in a courtyard development fronting on to the Portsmouth Road.

Renaissance say existing trees will be kept and there will be additional landscaping and tree planting.

However one neighbour has already responded to the published plans and describes the four-storey flats as a “tower block” and an “ugly carbuncle” which produced “an unbalanced view of the development from the Portsmouth Road”.

The neighbour also says the exit will clash with traffic from the new Stepping Stones school site opposite which was already producing 30-plus vehicles morning and afternoon.

The Renaissance statement concludes: “The proposed development of the site with much-needed housing for the elderly represents a use that will be more compatible with surrounding residential uses.”