So it’s very frustrating to be campaigning over the Howard Mallett site again, after some sort of reasonable ending seemed in sight last year.
Chard Robinson, the owners/leaseholders seem to be determined to lease the site to the Cambridge School of Visual and Performing Arts. The revised planning application with its “addendum planning statement” is open for comments until 4th July (extended from 28th June). We encourage you to register your views.
PACT did meet and discuss this with Chard Robinson, and so we’re mentioned in the addendum and have issued a response: 2016-16-14 response to addendum.
The main problem is that the local plan says you can’t put “university teaching accommodation” which doesn’t “cater to a primarily local market” into a building which has community use – which is very much the history of this site. It’s really black and white, and this is a really important protection because otherwise any community space – Church, school, anything – which comes up for sale can be bought up and used by the many schools which can profit from the Cambridge name and location. Obviously that’s exactly what’s happened to the Sturton St Methodist Chapel, although unfortunately without the need for planning permission since it didn’t need redevelopment.
To find the application you can use this link to Cambridge City Council planning, and search for 2372. Please do comment.