AN APPLICATION for a certificate of lawfulness to use a detached property as a children's home has been refused.

The application, relating to the property at 14 Moss Lane, Windle, received numerous letters of objection from residents.

In the proposals, applicants My3Ltd stated: "We believe that this proposal will have no impact on the local area, as it will operate as a domestic dwelling to all intents and purposes".

They said the property would "accommodate three young people along with support staff who work on a 24 hour rota basis to provide a minimum of two staff at any given point on a 24/7 basis".

However, a flurry of objections from residents were submitted.

One said: "The planning statement contains no clear specification as to the age groups/needs of any potential residents".

They added: "The staff changeovers alone would cause a huge amount of disruption to neighbours, not to mention visits by numerous other individuals".

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A decision notice said: "Based upon the evidence submitted with the application and having regard to all material facts, St Helens Council hereby give notice that on the date the application was made, the development was not lawful within the meaning of Section 192 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 for the following reason(s):

"It is considered that the increased level of activity that would occur on a daily basis associated with the proposed use would be more intensive and constant than might reasonably be expected to be generated by dwellinghouse.

"It is considered that the levels of comings and goings would be more accustom to a C2 - residential institution such that the overall character of the use would materially differ to that of a C3 - dwellinghouse consequently planning permission would be required".