Adverse aspects are not considered to outweigh the benefits
The strategic planning committee at Cornwall Council has narrowly accepted the planning application to expand the university numbers at Tremough to 7500. The committee voted 8 -7 with one abstention.
Despite a 3000 name petition against the idea, and with many reservations and declarations of heavy hearts, a majority of councillors were convinced that there were no valid specific planning conditions that would warrant rejecting the proposals.
The planning officers had recommended the proposals be passed as they suggested that the benefits would outweigh any adverse effects.
Barabara Hewit-Sewell, a spokesperson for Mabe Parish Council made a passionate speech saying that the village felt bullied and belittled by the University. She said that if they raised any any objections they were treated like “country bumpkins”. There were no representations from Penryn Council but they had previously supported the application. Falmouth council objected to the proposal on the grounds of lack of infrastructure – the doctors were full, the dentists werte full etc he said and the existing services can’t cope with the amount of students in falmouth already. He said that although they support the uni but support the original hub and spoke idea to relieve pressure on the town.
The university pointed out that the increase would largely be filled by the Cornish student population – 20 % of the total – however they only need to have 0.8 per student purpose built student accommodation (PBSA) as Cornish students tend to live at home. This however is an increase from the 0.75 previously asked for by the university and this seemed to be one of the few changes to the application from the original application.
Candy Atherton, who was MP for Falmouth when the campus was first proposed (in 1999) urged the committee to reject the proposals as it moves further away from the original idea of the ‘hub and rim’ idea. Falmouth was now creaking at the seams she said and used an example of a friend who had recently tried to find private rented accommodation in Falmouth. Her friend had found 102 houses for rent in Falmouth – however a huge 98 of them were for students only under the HMO scheme.
A further proposal to build further student accommodation (112 flats and 25 townhouses) next to Kernick Industrial estate was also approved.
WATCH: Mabe Councillor let rip! telling how life is living next to the uni: