Birchgrove, Godalming

We obtained planning permission and listed building consent on behalf of assisted living developers, Birchgrove, for their retirement community in Godalming, Surrey, following a 10 to 1 decision in favour of granting permission from the Waverley Planning Committee. This new scheme – Birchgrove’s retirement rental model – fills an important gap in the market centred around improving affordability and ease of access to assisted living accommodation, without the stress of owning a house.

The development adjacent to the Godalming Town Centre provides assisted living accommodation for independent people over 65, with access to local shops, leisure and parks. The development provides new landscaped areas, allotments, pétanque court and roof gardens.

Our Solutions

The site includes listed buildings which will be retained and converted for integration within the retirement community and provides a unique reuse of former office space. The development regenerates the site of a former retail warehouse which was underperforming in terms of its contribution to the town.

The development will provide retirement accommodation, with on-site care, which can be adapted to the individual needs of residents. Homes are provided on a rental basis, with the scheme providing a full range of communal facilities, such as restaurant and gym, bar and lounge, café and landscaped gardens to encourage activity and interaction, maintaining and improving health and wellbeing.

The Outcome

The application was submitted following extensive pre-application engagement with the Borough Council, the local community and key stakeholders. Following the submission of the application, and having considered comments from the Town Council and others expressing concerns on the height and scale of the development, the development was reconfigured to reduce height and massing (while limiting the reduction in the number of homes to only one). In response, the Town Council confirmed their support for the amended scheme, along with the support of officers this led to permission being granted by the planning committee.