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Flats for homeless women to be built on former Nottingham church site

Flats for women who are homeless will be built in Bestwood to help ease soaring demand for more accommodation.

Homelessness support charity Framework will be building 15 units of supported accommodation and communal facilities on the site of the former St Matthews Church.

The church was demolished in 2019 following damage from an arson attack in 2009.

The site sits near to the Henry Whipple Primary School, with a pedestrian entrance to the school five metres from the access track.

A total of 14 objections were received, with some raising issue with its close proximity to the school.

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Some objections argued “children would be exposed to those with complex mental health and addiction”, while others were concerned over parking issues.

Framework says residents would have 24-hour double staff cover to ensure it is properly managed.

During a Planning Committee meeting on December 20, councillors unanimously approved the plans.

Cllr Graham Chapman (Lab) said: “I think it is an appropriate site in isolation. You have got to think about the school and if the school is satisfied at the moment then that is very helpful.

“The neighbouring residents again will no-doubt have concerns but I hope those concerns are attenuated by the fact that it will be all-female.

“On that basis, given the needs in the city, I would be very supportive.”

The authority is facing rising demand for support for those who have just become homeless, but all 441 units of temporary housing is full.

This means it is spending around £22,000 every day sheltering those in need in bed and breakfasts and hotels.

Cllr Kirsty Jones (Lab) said: “It is obviously much-needed in the city with the amount of homelessness we are facing, and I think, even though it is smaller than the amount you would expect, I think it is good quality.

“I think it is a well-sheltered plan looking at the pictures from the schools and residential areas. It is good Framework has supported the headteachers of the schools and given those assurances.”

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