The final curtain may have come down on Alton’s cinema but the script for its next chapter is still to be finalised.
Plans to convert the legendary Normandy Street landmark into six apartments have been rejected.
The application by owner Raj Jevasingam had its backers with planning officers receiving three letters of support and Alton Town Council raising no objections.
But while planners admitted the renovation would actually improve the building’s exterior, concerns about lack of parking, loss of privacy and light levels in the apartments were too strong to overlook.
“The proposed development would result in a significant level of overlooking and loss of privacy for the neighbouring occupants of 62 Normandy Street,” stated Natalie Meagher in her notice.
“The proposed development would fail to provide adequate natural light and outlook to all habitable rooms.
“Furthermore, due to the lack of sound attenuation, it would also result in a poor and oppressive form of accommodation.”
The good news for the applicant is the council’s heritage officer did not object to the plans, suggesting approval is not far off.
The officer wrote: “The proposed use as residential appears to be the optimal viable use for the building which also ensures the front visual element is retained.
“Overall, the scale and design of the extension to the building and alteration to the facades will ensure a good-quality development that will complement and respect both the retained façade and the wider area.”