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The former Swansea Boys Club, Berwick Terrace, Swansea (pic by Richard Youle and free for use for all BBC wire partners)

Former Hillside boys club building given new lease of life as flats

A FORMER boys’ club which is on its last legs will be converted into flats.

Fire, vandalism, and years of vacancy have left Swansea Boys Club a sorry state, but the council’s planning committee has given approval for 23 flats to take shape there.

Councillors were told that the upper floor will have to be demolished.

After a site visit to the hilltop site and a lengthy debate about the scheme, put forward by a company called Lifestyle Dimensions Ltd, the committee gave the go-ahead by seven votes to three.

A Swansea Boys Club sign on the current building will be attached to the new-look flats.

The Berwick Terrace club, on the border of Mayhill and Mount Pleasant, dates from 1922 and was put up for sale by the council in 2015.

Addressing the planning committee, ward councillor David Phillips and said he and his colleague Cllr Fiona Gordon had concerns about the proposal, including a parking shortfall, water run-off, and how the flats would look in 10 years’ time – although they were not against the redevelopment of the site.

“It is a mess,” said Cllr Phillips. “But we don’t agree that anything is better than nothing.”

Committee members wanted to know how construction traffic would safely access the steep area of land surrounding the club, whether telecommunications masts adjacent to the building could be an issue, whether brick finish could replace some of the renders, and how long barriers preventing access to and from Berwick Terrace would open for to allow construction.

Cllr Mary Jones said she was worried that the proposed block was a “such a very bland building”, while Cllr Des Thomas felt the new design “looked like an institution more than anything else”.

The applicant has proposed 20 parking spaces, which is seven fewer than would be expected to serve the development of that size. Cycle storage will also be provided.

All the flats meet the relevant minimum size guide, although a ground floor one has limited natural light.

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