A CAR wash’s bid to secure retention permission for the facility has failed.

What was the application for?

Applicant Mr P. King sent in proposals to St Helens Council last year seeking permission for the retention of a hand car wash on a car sales forecourt and boundary fencing, at 383 to 385 West End Road, Haydock.

A design and access statement in the plans said: “The site has previously had planning permission for the same proposal but has subsequently lapsed” and “most recently been granted temporary planning permission for three years (in 2019)”.

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The application claimed “the scale of the carwash facility itself will be limited by the number of staff and should therefore cause no detriment to the neighbouring commercial or residential properties”.

The plans acknowledged there were concerns raised “regarding over-spray by local residents to the rear of the site” and over “sound levels” and it was  said a “perimeter fence has subsequently been raised”.

However, the council found this would not be sufficient to offset the impact of noise on nearby residents.

Residents' objections

In a report recommending the application be refused, case officer Alex Ball noted there had been four objections to the application, including over noise and other concerns relating to visual harm and claims the “development is regularly operating outside of the designated washing areas”.

The report was said the Council’s Noise officer “disputes the findings” in a Noise Impact Assessment submitted in the application, and “considers that the adjacent neighbouring properties will be affected all day long by noise generated by the car wash facility”.

It was said that the officer considers the acoustic fencing “would not be enough to ensure noise impacts for neighbouring residents are not unacceptable”.

It said with the constant use of high-pressure washers, “it is doubted that housing the machines in an open forecourt yard would successfully attenuate noise emissions”.

It would 'impair residents' peace and quiet'

The report added: “It is considered that the nature of the activity and its proximity to neighbouring residents would impair the peace and quiet they might reasonably expect to enjoy”.

Council planners also said the “development canopy and boundary treatment are of a poor quality deign and result in visual clutter along a prominent gateway corridor, causing harm to the visual amenity of the site and surrounding area”.

The application was refused permission.