A planning appeal has been launched to turn a property in Hatfield into a care home for children.

The application submitted by Savannah Lodge Ltd to turn home in The Runway into a care home for four children was turned down by Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council in July.

The council's planning officers cited that a "children's care home for up to four children with learning difficulties, would likely result in significant disturbance and harm to the residential amenity of neighbouring occupiers in terms of noise and activity levels".

"The proposed development fails to provide adequate on-site parking and displaced on-street parking would likely have an unacceptable impact on highway safety and cause harm to character and appearance of the area," the refusal notice continues.

Having submitted an appeal against the decision, Savannah Lodge Ltd has described Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council's reasons for refusing the application as "unfounded".

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"The suggestion that there could be an adverse impact on the neighbourhood from such homes is unfounded," the appeal reads.

"The fear of crime and anti-social behaviour is a material planning consideration which might weigh against the granting of planning permission. The application was not an application for planning permission.

"However, and given that this is a matter of planning merit and in the absence of any basis to conclude that crime and anti-social behaviour are an inherent part of the character of the proposed use, such a fear is not relevant to the determination of this application for a Lawful Development Certificate."

A Lawful Development Certificate proves to both the local authority and future buyers that the project carried out was legal at the point of construction, thus providing protection if the planning policies change and allowing people to start construction with confidence

"The proposed use of the property as a children’s home does not represent a material change of use from that of the existing dwelling house," the appeal concludes.

"The Inspector is respectfully requested to allow the appeal and grant a Lawful Development Certificate to allow this much needed use to be established."

The original application received a host of objections from neighbours, but none have so far been raised against the appeal.