Plans for ‘luxury’ student digs in Kenilworth raise concerns

Victoria Lodge in Warwick Road, which will be converted into an 11-bedroom HMO. Copyright: Google Street View
Victoria Lodge in Warwick Road, which will be converted into an 11-bedroom HMO. Copyright: Google Street View

A plan to convert a Kenilworth hotel into ‘luxury’ student accommodation is proving controversial.

Victoria Lodge in Warwick Road could become an 11-bedroom house aimed at either postgraduates or young professionals if the plans are approved by Warwick District Council.

No external changes to the building are planned, but there would be only six parking spaces.

Kenilworth Town Council’s planning committee remained neutral to the conversion.

Members said while they had no reason to object, they were concerned over the possible loss of another hotel in the town.

Neil Buswell of Warwick Road objected to the plan for several reasons, including a possible reduction in natural light to nearby properties and parking issues.

He said: “We are aware that the proposal is for six parking spaces and 11 flats. With potentially two vehicles per flatlet development and parking at a premium already in Clarke’s Avenue, Whites Row and St Johns Street, existing congestion and parking problems in the area could increase further.

“Where would visitors of the residents park?”

He also voiced concerns about the potential for antisocial behaviour.

But applicant Neill Currie described the plans as a ‘unique proposition’ and played down the possibility of bad behaviour from residents.

He said: “There is a growing demand for this type of service known as ‘residence hotels’ and it will bring some variety to accommodation offered in Kenilworth.

“The service will be priced accordingly and will only attract a high standard of clientele; as such we would expect antisocial behaviour not to be an issue.”