Plans to turn former Sheffield hotel into housing for homeless in city suburb

Nearly 200 people objected to plans to turn a former hotel into social housing for the homeless in fear of an increase in antisocial behaviour and crime.

The objectors are against plans to use the site of the former Staindrop Lodge, on Lane End, Chapeltown, for 44 affordable studio units.

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Sheffield Council used the site to accommodate those unable to find a home during the Covid-19 pandemic which the applicant said has effectively established the suitability of the use already.

The hotel

But residents are concerned anti-social behaviour, begging and noise they experienced since the hotel was used for this purpose will worsen.

One, who lives nearby on Chambers View, said: “In our opinion a homeless person requires much more than being given an address, and this has been proven by the current residents in the hotel.

“There are people begging, intoxicated and high from the substance they have taken. We have children and have had to walk past doorways with people passed out covered in their own urine.

“Much more worryingly is that my parents’ garden backs onto the hotel and they have had nothing but issues and fear this will continue if this is approved.

“My children have been with my parents while I work and there was litter and cigarette buts that have been dropped in the garden that my children have been very close to picking up but thankfully called for help.

“Chapeltown is a nice community with plenty of primary schools, business and families. I find it very worrying that my parents feel scared in their surroundings and that my children may have to witness the sort of antisocial behaviour that is taking place.”

Another, who lives on the same street, said: “The fact this is even being considered in a residential area is frankly a disgrace. It would not be entertained in the more so called desirable southern areas of Sheffield.

“For the elderly immediate neighbours of the hotel that should feel safe and enjoying their retirement not feeling terrified and scared, for the local children who should be able to walk to and from school not feeling vulnerable or scared and able to enjoy their childhood and for the local community in general this simply can not happen in the location proposed.”

In a statement provided with the plans, Erimax Land, on behalf of Fairhome Group, said: “People can become homeless for all kinds of reasons and securing an affordable home at a time of an acute shortage of decent and available affordable housing can sometimes prove to be a task beyond hope.

“In full accordance with adopted and emerging policy, the proposed development will revitalise a previously developed site in a sustainable location and provide 44 affordable, manageable and urgently needed new homes.

“There is a requirement for new affordable housing to meet the needs of homeless people in Sheffield, as there is across the country.”

An affordable housing statement included in the plan’s documents state all tenant referrals would come through the council, with the rental income being covered by housing benefit.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a digital subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.