A HOTEL in Streatley should not be allowed to build an overflow car park, a planning officer has recommended.

The Swan at Streatley will reopen next month after a four-year £12 million refurbishment, but the hotel is concerned about having enough car parking.

Plans were submitted to build an overflow car park with up to 87 spaces, which will be considered by West Berkshire Council’s planning committee on June 26.

Hugh Osmond, the owner of the hotel, said: “We’re doing it because there’s nowhere else for people to park and we don’t want it to inconvenience the residents. 

“Regardless of the reopening of the Swan, the parking along the high street of Streatley and the congestion is the number one issue for the Streatley community already.

“We would like to avoid making that worse and perhaps even make it better.”

Commenting on the plans, a representative from Streatley Parish Council said in this ‘exceptional’ case, the parish does not object to the application.

The parish council wrote the car park would ‘accommodate the additional parking generated by the enlarged hotel, which would otherwise be displaced onto the already crowded high street’.

However, the North Wessex Downs area of natural beauty board raised concerns, writing: “The parking will nearly double that of the existing car park which appears excessive.

“Streatley benefits from its proximity to Goring station, an asset for this locality, and the hotel should be utilising it and encouraging this sustainable means of travel above that of a car park.”

Four letters objecting to the plans were sent while 46 letters were sent in support. Reasons for objecting were light pollution, adverse effects on the natural surroundings, and encouraging more car use.

Reasons for supporting were a lack of parking in the village, increased visitors following the hotel reopening, and that local residents would be able to use the car park.

The head of planning for West Berkshire Council recommended refusing the plans because of the impact on the North Wessex Downs AONB, and the impact on the countryside setting.

Councillors will decide on the June 26 meeting whether to approve or refuse the plans.