02:49AM, Monday 05 November 2012
Hopes are rising that Windsor's decaying and abandoned ex-services club can be rebuilt soon.
The Windsor Ex-Services Club in St Leonard's Road was originally built in 1918. As well as providing a social club for ex-servicemen and women, its function room was much used by other groups - including the organisers of the Windsor Fringe Festival which staged plays there.
The building was becoming increasingly delapidated and closed in June.
A plan was submitted by Virginia Water based company SG Investments to build a smart new club on the site, while putting up eight three-storey town houses on the land at the back.
But the plan stalled when Royal Borough planning councillors threw it out in August. They felt the developers were trying to squash too many houses on the site - one councillor even described them as almost like rabbit hutches. There were also concerns about protected trees on the site and fears that so many houses would add to the town's parking problems.
SG Investments is still considering appealing against the Royal Borough's refusal. But on Thursday the company put in a new application, reducing the number of proposed three bedroomed houses from eight to seven.
A spokesman said: "We hope it can go through this time."
Councillors are due to make a decision by the end of the year. Meanwhile the old building is becoming an increasingly forlorn looking overgrown eyesore, while members of the ex-services club are meeting at a nearby club in Alma Road.
Ex-services Club chairman George Kermack said: "We can only hope the plan goes through this time, the sooner the better."
He said members missed having their own club and were aware of just being guests at Alma Road.
An independent report into a Conservative councillor has found a breach of the Royal Borough’s code of conduct in a document seen by the Advertiser.