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Hospital plans denied approval from St. Helier

Hospital plans denied approval from St. Helier

Tuesday 23 November 2021

Hospital plans denied approval from St. Helier

Tuesday 23 November 2021


It's emerged the Parish of St Helier officially declined to support the planning application for the new hospital - despite being one of the main landowners - meaning the Environment Minister will now have to decide whether it’s in the public interest to accept it anyway.

Plans to build the £800m facility at Overdale were submitted to the Planning Department last Monday (15 November) on the same day that Constable Simon Crowcroft was asked to approve them on behalf of the Parish of St. Helier.

The Parish is one of the main landowners, meaning their approval was sought before the plans were submitted. However, the Parish’s CEO, Jason Turner, confirmed today that Constable Crowcroft had declined to provide it. 

simon-crowcroft.jpg

Pictured: Constable Simon Crowcroft refused to sign the landowner’s certificate on behalf of the Parish.

“The Constable responded the same day, explaining that he was not in a position to sign the landowner’s certificate, reflecting the outcomes of recent Parish Assembly discussions regarding acquisition and use of the land, and the proposed re-provision of land and facilities for the Jersey Bowling Club which were unresolved,” he explained. 

The latest refusal from the Parish means the Minister for the Environment will still have to decide whether it is in the public interest to accept the application without the approval of the Parish. 

The Planning and Building Law states that if a landowner declines to agree to a planning application being submitted, the Minister has powers to issue a Ministerial Decision to accept it regardless.

Express has contacted the Our Hospital team and Senator Lyndon Farnham, who chairs the Our Hospital Political Oversight Group, and is waiting for a reply. 

In February, parishioners voted to stop all work on Westmount Road until the Parish had “confirmed at a further assembly that it has received the details it requires”. Four months later, when the Our Hospital team went back to the parish to ask if it now had the information it needed to back the proposal, the answer was no

165 parishioners told planners and politicians to go back to the drawing board while those happy with the proposals barely reached double figures, prompting the man whose 'requête' led to the initial assembly, Advocate Olaf Blakeley, to call for Senator Farnham to step aside.

Westmount_Road4.jpg

Pictured: In February, parishioners voted to stop all work on Westmount Road until the Parish had “confirmed at a further assembly that it has received the details it requires”.

The Parish's Roads Committee has also written to the Planning Department urging them not to approve the demolition of Overdale until the full hospital application has received the green light, over concerns a derelict site could be left behind if the project fails.

It came after the Parish called out the Government for refusing to discuss detailed road access plans for the new hospital in public.

The Roads Committee was due to hear about the Westmount highway plans last Wednesday, but Our Hospital project officials tried to get the item moved to the private ‘B Agenda’.

In a statement released on Friday afternoon, the Roads Committee explained: "At the St. Helier Roads Committee meeting held on Wednesday 17 November 2021, the Committee expressed its disappointment that the ‘Our Hospital’ team did not present proposals relating to the new hospital’s impact on parish roads as expected. This was due to the fact that the majority of Roads Committee meeting items form part of the ‘A agenda’ that is open to the public, but the ‘Our Hospital’ team had requested the matter be discussed under the ‘B agenda’ which is closed to the public."

John-Young.jpg

Pictured: Deputy John Young, the Minister for the Environment, will have to decide whether to accept the planning application or not.

The Planning Application, which has yet to appear on the planning website, not only includes the creation of the new building and its associated landscaping, but the realignment of Westmount Road and the demolition of properties outside the Overdale site such as the Jersey Bowling Club, the Jersey Water building and some private properties.

Included in the submitted documents will be an Environmental Impact Assessment assessing how wildlife in the area will be impacted.

Unlike the demolition application, the hospital planning application will entail a full public inquiry, allowing islanders and interested bodies to make submissions on all elements. 

That inquiry is expected to take place in late spring, with permission hoped to be received in summer 2022, allowing construction to start straight after. 

 

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Posted by gordon le claire on
what on earth are our states members doing surely before deciding the hospital was going to be at overdale they would have contacted the parish to get approval first not after spending millions buying property and having plans designed at I am sure was a great cost to the taxpayer.
many years ago when I was young they said lets start paying states members that way we will get better people standing well that went wrong the states members now are the worse we have had in years
Posted by Neil Little on
the States/Government need to be held to account for this complete shambles. Can't build a hospital, building on green land all over a tiny island, hundreds of mature trees felled without question, changing road layouts with hand painted signs on the road etc...the list goes on. Utter incompetence.
Posted by Jon Jon on
When States members were unpaid they did their best for this Island in all ways.Once they were paid ,well you attract those who see the pound sign,who’s careers have gone out the window.Its diabolical in the States now and why I just won’t bother voting next year.Reject them all as we won’t miss them!
Posted by Keith Marsh on
Why is 'Our Hospital’ team so frightened that they have to hide away and hold discussions out of public sight, obviously something STINKS.
The main problem now is Deputy John Young, the Minister for the Environment, who will follow his masters bidding.
Personally I am not against Overdale as the hospital site, but am totally against the alteration of Westmount Road and the removal of Jersey Bowling Club from its current situation.
Thanks to Constable Simon Crowcroft, who will make our "government" think again.
Posted by MadeleineWant91 on
Why is the Our Hospital team scared that they want to hold discussions in private without the Public knowing what is happening with their money?
I am sure John Young Minister for the Environment will agree the plans and ride tough shot over the Parish decision he did after all vote yes for the funding.
I am not against Overdale as the hospital site, but against the demise of services in the new build and the size of the build, and the fact that the public are being drip fed information.
The enormous alterations to Westmount Road and the removal of Jersey Bowling Club, many trees etc. The re-siting of unloading bays in Pierson Road, changing the flow of the traffic from Patriotic Car Park, especially with nearly 300 new builds starting shortly in Kensington Place. Surely not all this is necessary, and how will it help? Certainly not the commuters!
I hope at the very least the decision by the POSH will make the Government sit back and reflect!
Madeleine
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