NEIGHBOURS of a former art products factory earmarked for redevelopment have objected to the proposed houses that back on to theirs.
Families in Whitefriars Avenue, Wealdstone, submitted a petition against ColArt Fine Art and Graphics’ planning application to transform the now-closed Winsor and Newton plant into a mini new estate.
Colin Ryan, 59, who has lived in the street since the age of two and attended Whitefriars Community School opposite the site, said: “They are planning to cram as many people as possible into the space.
“We are objecting to the houses that will back on to our property. It’s a three-storey development and we want it to be two-storeys, and they are only giving them gardens that are 6m long.”
The terraced homes are part of ColArt Fine Art and Graphics’ plans to revitalise its 2.29-hectare site by demolishing the factory buildings but retaining the locally listed Winsor and Newton office building fronting Whitefriars Avenue.
The building would be refurbished as office space to accommodate 130 jobs and a new Artist Colourmens’ Studio for up to 30 artists.
Three blocks of flats and another short row of terraced houses would be constructed and some space left for the expansion of adjacent Salvatorian College in High Road, Harrow Weald. In total there would 195 new properties.
Mr Ryan, a former skip lorry driver who is currently a house husband, said: “I preferred it when they had a sawmill behind our houses. When it was a factory it worked eight or 10 hours maximum a day but you had privacy and quiet in the evenings and at the weekends. With the houses going in, it will be disturbance 24/seven.”
The company closed the factory in 2012 after gradually relocating the manufacturing of paints and art materials, which had been sustained since the late 19th century, to France while the head office and research and development employees moved to new headquarters in White City in west London.
The application was due to be decided yesterday (Wednesday) evening by Harrow Council’s planning committee.
Paul Sellars, consultant for ColArt, said: “An enormous amount of time and effort has been spent with Harrow’s planning officers looking at the issues of overlooking and the distances between the existing buildings and new buildings. The development is well set back from the houses in Whitefriars Avenue and the distances are well in excess of the minimum required.”