Have your say on plans to replace Liphook landmark with retirement flats

By Jon Walker   |   Senior reporter   |
Thursday 31st March 2022 3:55 pm
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Plans are being put forward to build retirement flats (artist’s impression below) on the site of the former Allianz insurance building
Plans are being put forward to build retirement flats on the site of the former Allianz insurance building (Ashill Land )

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LIPHOOK residents are invited to a virtual consultation event presenting McCarthy Stone’s plans to redevelop the former Allianz office building, Ajax House, off Haslemere Road, into homes for retirees.

The virtual and postal consultation event is being held until next Wednesday, April 6.

Ashill Land bought the redundant office block from Allianz Insurance last year for a reputed £15 million.

A consultation last summer revealed plans to demolish the building, home to the insurance company since 1986, and replace it with a small-scale residential development of up to 30 homes.

An Ashill spokesman said: “After a review of the proposals and given the local need for specialist older person’s housing, Ashill has recently entered a partnership with market leaders in the sector, McCarthy Stone, to bring forward proposals for the site’s redevelopment to provide new specialist retirement accommodation.”

Now McCarthy Stone and Ashill are holding a Covid-safe and inclusive exhibition to display their plans for high-quality retirement living accommodation on the site.

It will provide the opportunity to view and comment on the proposals before a planning application is submitted later this year.

The building footprint will be about the same size as Ajax House, and will include indoor communal facilities, and on-site car parking as well as extensive landscaping of the site.

McCarthy Stone spokesman Shane Paull said: “We are proposing a high-quality redevelopment that delivers specialist retirement living apartments close to shops and facilities in Liphook.

“The consultation is an important opportunity to understand feedback on our proposals at this early stage.

“That way, we can incorporate and address the views of the local community into the design, where possible.

“It is important communities cater to all their residents, and this development would improve accommodation choice for local older people.”

The apartments will be for people aged 60 or over and will be for outright sale, shared ownership, rent and part rent, part buy.

East Hampshire District Council’s housing and economic development needs assessment in 2018 highlighted  that the district has an ageing population.

It said the over-65 age group was expected to increase by 49 per cent by 2036 and concluded there was an “increasing need for specialist housing.”

The plans are available to view and comment on via the project’s dedicated website at www.mccarthystoneconsultation.co.uk/liphook

Residents who cannot access the internet can contact the project team on 0800 298 7040, who will arrange for a hard copy to be sent.

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