The Avenue – Simon Scott Homes

The site was a former independent secondary school located in a Conservation Area and included a “locally listed” building. It was acquired by Simon Scott Homes in 2012 after the school, which had struggled financially for a number of years, closed.

John Rowan and Partners was appointed as Planning Consultants to prepare and implement a planning strategy from pre-purchase to start-on-site for the redevelopment of the site for new housing. This included leading the project and design team in the initial assessment of development potential; pre-application negotiations with the Ealing Council; the scoping and preparation of necessary documentation; and the submission and negotiation of the planning application.

The planning strategy focused on addressing the three key planning policy areas: The protection of existing schools as a community facility; the significance of the “locally listed” building; and the form and design of the replacement buildings. A detailed assessment of the school catchment, the availability of other schools and the suitability of the buildings for alternative community uses (including marketing exercises and detailed costings) was undertaken; a heritage asset assessment of the existing buildings was provided; and detailed research was undertaken into design typologies of the surrounding area.

In detailed pre-application discussions with the Council and relevant stakeholders, it was accepted that the policy test relating to retention of community facilities had been met and the proposed design approach was seen to, overall, enhance the character and appearance of the Conservation Area. Planning permission for the redevelopment of the site to provide new housing was granted by Ealing Council in October 2013.