Plans for new children's home in Sheffield suburb approved despite objections from residents

A children’s home will be allowed to open in a Sheffield neighbourhood despite objections from nearby residents.

Friday, 12th November 2021, 10:17 am

24 Norwood Drive will accommodate up to three young people between the ages of 10 to 17 with up to three full time resident carers. Stays will be between six months to two years.

Burngreave councillor Mark Jones sent a statement to the planning board on behalf of 22 residents opposing the plans.

Coun Jones criticised a lack of consultation and also said residents were worried about crime.

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A children's home can open at 24 Norwood Drive after Sheffield councillors unanimously approved the plans.

“There’s a fear that not only will this development give reason for drug dealers and other criminals to frequent Norwood Road but that those living within this property would become entrapped by criminals, groomed and exploited.

“We need to be assured the young people are safe. We need to know that avenues will exist where inappropriate behaviour can be raised and that such concerns are genuinely responded to.

“Will sufficient safeguards be put in place to protect the rights of residents as well as the safety of these children?”

“A lack of wider consultation has led to a loss of trust between residents and the developer.

“I do not want situations to develop where young people feel unwelcome because the developer has not delivered a sense of partnership with the neighbours.”

Councillors unanimously approved the Norwood children’s home

Officers said there was no evidence the home would generate crime and there was legislation which ensured children were kept safe, along with regular checks by Ofsted.

They said residents could keep informed of applications via the council’s planning portal.

Councillors unanimously approved the home. Coun Peter Price said: “Children are in care for many reasons and as a council, we have a duty to find the best option and that isn’t stuck in a home with 20 other kids.

“I understand people’s fears but you could have a house with three foster kids which wouldn’t need to come to us for permission.

“On the whole, kids in our care are desperate for stability and as a council we can offer some sort of stability in communities in proper housing with neighbours.”