Council to decide whether homeless shelter can remain open year round

James Harrison

Town hall chiefs are preparing to decide whether a homeless shelter should be allowed to open all year round.

The Royal Borough’s Maidenhead Development Management Panel are due to discuss the plans for John West House, in Howarth Road, tonight (Wednesday).

Temporary planning permission for the centre, which is housed in an empty industrial building, was granted in September.

This permitted it to operate for five years, providing accommodation for up to nine people between 7.30pm and 8am, seven days a week, but only from October-March.

It was officially opened in January and named after John ‘Big John’ West, who was often seen outside the Halifax branch in the High Street, and who died in October.

Charity the Brett Foundation, which provides services for homeless and other vulnerable people, had been set to run the facility, but pulled out after failing to agree lease terms with the Royal Borough.

A report prepared ahead of the meeting said councillors should consider the impact on character and appearance of the area, the potential impact on current and future neighbours and traffic implications.

The reference number for the John West House plans is REF: 17/00717

Proposals for three new private meeting rooms to be installed in Maidenhead Library, in St Ives Road, were also due to be debated.

According to plans, if approved this would help create a ‘one-stop-shop’ for a merged library and customer services centre.

 The reference number for the Maidenhead Library plans is REF: 17/01159

A scheme to demolish a house in Shoppenhangers Road and replace it with five flats was also on the agenda.

The reference number for the Shoppenhangers Road plans is REF: 17/00656

All three proposals have been recommended for approval by planning officers.


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