Detailed plans for Ravens Court replacement now available

As a design goes, visually it’s similar to the existing precinct, but much shorter, starting just beyond the rear of the the current card and shoe shops. Intrigued at the cloning going on in the crowd. Image from planning documents on Walsall Council’s Planning Interactive service. Click for a larger version.

A week ago, I pointed out that much to my surprise, a planning application had just been submitted to replace the long-derelict shopping precinct in Brownhills – Ravens Court -with two new retail units and a gym.

The background on this sorry saga of the derelict shopping centre in Brownhills can be read here.

At the time of posting last week, detailed plans and documentation for the development had not appeared on the planning system – well, as I said at the time, they’d take a few days to appear and they have now – and are far more professional, detailed and comprehensive than I expected.

My warnings and caveats from last week still stand: this is ONLY A PLANNING APPLICATION. A planning application is just that; it first of all has to be approved, then it’s up to whoever submitted it to act upon it. Granting planning permission does not mean a thing will get built.

This may yet still be a diversionary tactic. But the comprehensiveness of the application means someone has spent a lot on this, so that’s something.

This would be the view from the rear, Tesco side of the car park – from this the awkward slope fo the ground as it exists and the measures to counter it can be seen. Image from planning documents on Walsall Council’s Planning Interactive service. Click for a larger version.

Beware, as we approach the next set of Council elections in May of sitting Councillors and political parties who will claim this is somehow a success and was their doing; the protracted and sorry saga isn’t over, has clearly not been influenced by any politician (as the near decade dereliction shows) and this isn’t a success until we have a new building and Ravens Court is carried finally carried to dust.

The application details are as follows, and the applicant is the current owner, Lightquote Limited, a London-based property company.

Application Number: 17/1131
Proposal: Part demolition of existing retail units and erection of 2 x A1 retail units with storage and gym at first floor and car parking and service area to the rear.
Site Address: SHOPPING PRECINCT AT, RAVENS COURT, BROWNHILLS, WALSALL, WS8 6EJ
Application Type: Full Application

Applicant Details

Full Name or Company Name: Mr Schwimmer 
Company Contact Name: 
Address: Lightquote Limited, 22 Braydon Road, London, N16 6QB 

 

A link to the application on Walsall Council’s Planning System can be found here but all the documents in that link at the time of posting can be accessed directly at the links below. I noted that the first two 3D models continue the hideous modern trend of gruesome two-tone shading and colour, whereas the the third one is more natural.

Worth particular study are the Design and Access Statement, Demolition Plan and Proposed Site Plan.

3D_Model_-_Sheet_1_- 02-10-17.pdf
3D_Views_-_Sheet_2_- 02-10-17.pdf
3D_Views_-_Sheet_3_- 02-10-17.pdf
Application_Form_15-08-17.pdf
Arboricultural_Survey_15-08-17.pdf
Demolition_Plan_02-et-17.pdf
Design_and_Access_Statement_15-08-17.pdf
Elevations_-_1_-02-10-17.pdf
Elevations_-_2_-02-10-17.pdf
Existing_Site_Plan_02-10-17.pdf
Planning_Statement_15-08-17.pdf
Proposed_Access_Routes 3 – 02-10-17.pdf
Proposed_Access_Routes 1 – 02-10-17.pdf
Proposed_Access_Routes 2 – 02-10-17.pdf
Proposed_First_Floor_Plan_02-10-17.pdf
Proposed_Ground_Floor_Plan_02-10-17.pdf
Proposed_Site_Plan_02-10-17.pdf
Sections_-_Sheet_1 – 02-10-17.pdf
Site_Location_Plan_02-10-17.pdf

This makes clear the extent of the new development, and shows the retention of the existing corner units, under different ownership. Image from planning documents on Walsall Council’s Planning Interactive service. Click for a larger version.

I’m fully aware the usual moaners won’t like this: But that, I’m afraid, is tough luck they’re having. The parcel of land occupied by Ravens Court is so awkward in shape and level, I can’t see much else being done with it, and if you want to wait for something more to your liking, the rest of the town can’t: Solving this problem is paramount. This is a decent looking development making good use of the existing situation. It’s best that I’ll think we’ll get.

I have no reason to suppose that Walsall Council will refuse this application – there’s no change of use, there’s no substantive change in height and it seems reasonable. I hope it’s approved quickly and work starts soon, but I remain sceptical.

Have a good root through the plans, and see what you notice. Feel free to comment here or mail me – BrownhillsBob at Googlemail for com. I’d appreciate your thoughts.

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8 Responses to Detailed plans for Ravens Court replacement now available

  1. Bowk says:

    Keep fingers crossed that the council will see sense and back these planning proposals and get them through as quickly as possible. Personally I dont care who or what councilors gets the pat on the back for getting said plans agreed, lets just get Ravens court up and running again and get our Brownhills looking the cats whiskers

    • Just a point here – it’s for the council to approve them or not, which will happen as these things do. I have no reason to think they will not be spproved.

      As to ‘backing’ the plans – this is a private development. It’s not the ounc’s place to do that.

      My point about politicians is valid; it’s about people celebrating prematurely. This is not a solution until the diggers move in. This could well be approved and nothing further happen, just like the Tesco plan.

      Cheers
      Bob

      • Bowk says:

        yes you are right Bob I just want to see this space open for business again.We have Tesco,Wilkinson,Greggs,Costa perhaps another big brand high street shop? hopefully, you never know,But then again a hopeful return for all the small independant shops that made Brownhhills what it once was

  2. Elizabeth Green says:

    Its good to see some sort of way forward on this – I have been writing to Wendy Morton about this for 18 months and she did advise recently that a 214 notice was being issued to the owners so I do hope this is going to happen eventually

  3. beryl says:

    do we need a gym in Brownhills, We could do with something for older people like a bingo hall or some kind of entertainment. The closest one is in Walsall not at all easy to get to .

  4. David Evans says:

    Hi Bob
    an OAP neighbour of mine “works out” in the ladies only gym in the Community Centre and enjoys it,…. she does.
    cheers
    David

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