‘Eyesore’ development still unfinished

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Work is still yet to restart on a Leicester development that has been blighted by delays.

Fiveways House is a Grade-II listed former factory site on Tudor Road and was once the home of the Threads Clothing Company. The building has been empty for a decade after a number of different planning disputes.

The latest planning application, granted after appeal in 2012, is to turn the site into 255 student flats, but work on the central steel frame stopped last year and has not resumed since.

Messenger Construction, the contractor assigned to the project, had previously stated its intention of getting work back underway ‘in the next two months’ in March of this year, but work is still yet to restart.

Leicester City Councillor Sue Waddington, representing Fosse Ward, said: “As it is now it is a bit of an eyesore.

“I do think it constitutes a bit of over development and the council has done everything it can to oppose it but now we just hope it is over with and finished as soon as possible.”

The development is at the heart of an area of affordable family housing and does not see a particularly high concentration of student accommodation, unlike the neighbouring Westcotes Ward.

Residents had previously raised concerns at the consultation stage of the planning process about parking, with the developer submitting no plans to increase the parking allocation in what is described as a ‘confined area’.

Councillor Waddington said: “I do think the council were correct at the beginning [of the planning process in 2012] to refuse permission because of the noise and parking issues raised by residents.”

But Labour Councillor Waddington did admit that the project could have positive effects on the area, with a possible increase of trade at shops, as well as improving the look of the site, which is surrounded on four sides by terraced housing.

No-one at Messenger Construction was available for comment yesterday.

Jonathan Whitney 

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