Planning Consent Approved

Retirement Villages has welcomed Woking Council planning committee’s decision to grant consent for its Reserved Matters planning application. The decision to approve the detailed designs, which passed unanimously, means the long-awaited redevelopment of the Sheer House site in West Byfleet can commence. 

The Reserved Matters application was presented to the full planning committee via Zoom on Tuesday 6 April. The approval will allow Retirement Villages to take another step forward in developing a new flagship retirement community in the heart of West Byfleet, Surrey.  

Commenting immediately after last night’s meeting, James Ahearne, Development Director at Retirement Villages, said, ‘We are delighted that Woking Borough Council has resolved to approve our Reserved Matters application. This marks an important milestone for our ambitious plan to bring economic, social and cultural activity back into the centre of West Byfleet. 

‘Thanks to the comprehensive feedback we received from the West Byfleet, Pyrford and Byfleet communities and their local representatives, I am confident that our scheme will not only help support our future residents and the people and businesses of West Byfleet but also the wider community. I very much look forward to seeing this engagement develop and grow as our scheme, with its public square and amenities, becomes established. 

‘This really has been a team effort. Local support and constructive feedback coupled with the diligence of Woking’s planning officers, means the final designs will benefit local people of all ages as well as deliver a new sense of community to a part of West Byfleet that has been unloved for too long.’  

Retirement Villages’ scheme will deliver 196 apartments for retirement living, as well as new retail, restaurant and café, a community space, a replacement public library and public car park along with a village square complete with seating, trees and water features. 

Achieving consent means Retirement Villages is on track to start construction by the end of the year. Specialist demolition contractors, Squibb Group Limited has already begun work on site. 

The public library, car park and toilets will be accessible to the public until the end of the summer. The project team is exploring options for a temporary library premises and alternative public car park arrangements for when the current facilities are closed. Including the initial pre-demolition activities, clearing the site is expected to take 30 weeks.