Plans from the council for to add a new flat to an apartment block in west Reading to house those at risk of homelessness have been delayed due to the coronavirus lockdown.

The one-bed flat at 72 Brunswick Street in west Reading, which would be rented at affordable housing rates, was set to be approved by Reading Borough Council’s (RBC) planning applications committee on April 1.

Four applications were due to be decided on at the meeting, including the return of a controversial plan which drew the interest of an Eastenders actor last year and other plans that have irked neighbours.

The meeting has now been scrapped as the council awaits new government regulations on how to make planning decisions.

Here is a look at the controversial plan in west Reading and another proposal for extensions at a home in east Reading which has angered neighbours.

One-flat plan for those at risk of homelessness delayed in area “struggling to tackle drug dealing, prostitution, beatings and burglaries”

RBC wants to convert the laundry room, bin store and cycle storage space at 72 Brunswick Street into an additional one-bed flat to the apartment building, which currently has 24 flats.

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If approved at a future meeting, the flat will be rented out at affordable housing rates to a family at risk of homelessness.

The application is resubmission of a previous plan which was slammed by neighbours, who said the area is already “struggling to tackle issues such as prostitution, drug dealing, beatings and burglaries without adding more to the mix”.

The previous proposal was withdrawn because it did not include a proposal to replace the lost laundry facility.

RBC has now agreed to provide new laundry areas as well as new communal bins and cycle storage facilities.

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No comments have been sent opposing the latest plans and the council has not addressed previous concerns about anti-social behaviour in its report.

“It will completely overshadow my kitchen”: Controversial extension plan delayed

Another plan which has been pushed back is for a single storey extension at a three-floor house on Watlington Street in east Reading.

The application was called in to be determined at the planning applications committee earlier this month by councillor Tony Page after neighbours hit out at the plan.

Helen Attwater, who lives at number 43 and spoke at the meeting, said the extension would “completely overshadow” her kitchen window “all year round”.

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She added: “It is going to have such a big impact on the rear of my house. I don’t understand what the justification for it is”.

Another neighbour, who lives at number 47, said the extension would block light from reaching her dining room window.

Committee members decided to defer a vote on the plan so that they could visit the site with officers.

The visit was scheduled for March 26 but, following government advice on social distancing to combat Covid-19, officers instead visited the site alone and took videos to provide councillors with additional information.

45 Watlington Street is a three-storey building located within Eldon Square Conservation Area.

All buildings on Watlington Street are either listed or designated as Buildings of Townscape Merit.