Coming soon to a controversial site in Godalming?

Now’s the time for the residents of Godalming to have their say on the future of the Mole Country Store formerly the  SCATS  buildings.   Retail went a few years back. Now developers want – the important site to make way for posh assisted living units.
Typical rent for a two-bedroom property is in the region of £5,000 per month – but with only council tax to pay. All other utilities and services are included.
More detail here.
Birchgrove wants to build 53 flats with 24-hour care in a three, and part five-storey building, in extensive landscaped grounds. There would be two buildings and alterations to the listed building – formerly Alan Paine Knitwear, following demolition of the existing buildings. 
Birchgrove operates a portfolio of extra-care developments offering contemporary self-contained apartments in new purpose-built facilities. There is already a Birchgrove home in nearby Woking.

Different from your usual assisted-living home.


The company claims to be different from most other extra care developments in the country, as it works on a rental model. It believes that renting a home instead of owning is the most liberating form of tenure for older people seeking extra care. This offers the benefits of independent living whilst removing the complication of homeownership? The proposed one and two-bedroom apartments are only available for weekly rent to people over the age of 65.
Typical rent for a two-bedroom property is in the region of £5,000 per month – but with only council tax to pay. All other utilities and services are included.
So if you want to have your say: on the former Moles Country Store in Brighton Road – speak up now or forever hold your peace.

Cllrs call for comments.

The official description for the application is as follows:
Erection of 2 buildings and alterations to existing Listed Building to provide 53 assisted living units (Use Class C2) with associated communal facilities, landscaping, amenity space and parking following demolition of the existing warehouse building.
 Link to the application and to comment:

4 thoughts on “Coming soon to a controversial site in Godalming?”

  1. At £60,000 pa this is not for the average pensioner. Surely there is something else for this site? How about the Council building some one bed homes with a small garden area for affordable rent for over 65’s. Hounslow has many such properties and they are very popular.

    1. One very simple answer to that is that the council don’t own the land…

      If we did I can think of a bunch of things some of us would prefer to do – including what you have suggested – but we don’t own the land (and so it’s a little disingenuous to suggest something else could go there).

      I agree they are likely to be crazy money too – but frustratingly that isn’t a planning matter…

  2. Well said above. What a great idea. Or maybe starter homes for youngsters – there is nothing affordable for young couples in this area. There has to be a better use for this site. It’s over development – really ugly design totally out of keeping and as anyone who has ever used Scats or Mole in the past will know it’s a nightmare getting out on to this narrow section of Brighton Road. They reckon cars on site will be minimal as it’s likely the residents, being old, will not have cars. At £5,000 a month they are unlikely to be able to afford one.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.