The developer which wants to build 11 flats and three houses on the site of the Advertiser’s old reel store have been told by councillors to go away and think again.

All because of a lack of parking in the plans for the site on Albert Street in Old Town.

Members of Swindon Borough Council’s planning committee narrowly voted not to approve the scheme put forward by Blewbury Court Ltd by six votes to five

But because there was no vote to refuse the application, it means the matter has been deferred and can return to the committee for its consideration.

Originally the plans had included undercroft parking for three cars, but that has been dropped from the scheme.

Agent for the developer Brian Mullins, of Leicester company Marrons Planning, told the committee. “Anybody who takes an apartment knows what they’re buying.

"There’s no parking. They’ll have to pay for it and that’s that.”

He added that the target demographic were tenants aged 25-40 and added: “There is a lower rate of car ownership in this group”.

Councillor Jane Milner-Barry said: “I don’t like the principle of saying the development doesn’t meet our standards for parking provision, but there isn’t enough space, then let’s drop it.

"That could be copied by developers all over the place.”

And Coun Maureen Penny took issues with the size and design of the flats.

She said: “They’re described as family homes, not one room bedsits.

"A young couple with children would have no opportunity to move around.And I don’t like the look of the flat roofs.”

Despite a warning from committee chairman Coun Tim Swinyard that turning down the application on grounds of lack of parking could cause 'hot water’ for the council, members voted narrowly against approving the scheme, and then voted seven votes to three to defer it, allowing an amended plan to come forward again.

After the meeting Mr Mullins said: “It’s disappointing. We’ll continue to work with officers to bring forward a regeneration scheme for this area of Old Town and hope that members will be able to support us.”