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Last Updated: Wednesday, 10 March, 2004, 08:59 GMT
Homeless shelter plans rejected
Homeless man
The charity still wants to spend 500,000 to help the homeless
Residents in a Cornwall town have won their fight against proposals for a homeless shelter.

Penwith councillors refused an application by the Salvation Army for the shelter for eight homeless people in Penare Road in Penzance.

Residents had argued they were concerned it would be occupied by people with "chaotic lifestyles".

The charity, which was "bitterly disappointed" by the decision, said it may seek legal advice on the decision.

Appeal considered

Councillors made the decision against the plans to convert a house into the hostel on Tuesday night based on a "potential fear of crime".

Salvation Army spokesman Adrian Prior-Sankey said the charity may seek legal advice on appealing against the decision. He also said he was surprised local people were not happy.

He said: "The Salvation Army will reflect very carefully on the council's decision when it comes through to us in writing.

"They've refused the application on just one ground only, that is fear of crime.

"We believe that is overstated, and we thought we'd given sufficient reassurances.

"We'll take legal advice, and clearly the option of appeal is one route we may take."

Populated area

The chairperson of the Lescudjack Residents' Association, which was set up to fight the plans, Bryony Rylett, said: "The fear of crime has been upheld as a genuine concern.

"We were worried about the sort of people who would be in there.

"There was no doubt that they would be 'men with chaotic lifestyles', which was the Salvation Army's own description of the people who would be in there.

"So, for all those reasons we didn't want a hostel in the middle of a densely-populated residential area.

"We've never denied that there should be a hostel somewhere, but councillors said that there should be some proper consultation about where this should go."

The Salvation Army said it had 500,000 which would have been used for the hostel.

"It insisted the money would still be used to help people in the Penzance area.

Bryony Rylett, Lescudjack Residents' Association
"Our area of the town is a conservation area."

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28 Oct 03  |  Devon

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