Agenda item

18 Highfield Road - 1151/APP/2022/113

Conversion of garage to habitable use, porch to front, part two storey, part single storey rear extension, part two storey, part single storey side extension and 2 side dormers (retrospective application)  installation of  a vehicle crossover, boundary treatments and driveway.


Recommendation: Approval


RESOLVED: That the application be approved


Officers presented the application and noted the part retrospective nature of the application. Planning permission had previously been granted for a near-identical proposal. Key differences included the height of the side and rear extensions, some design changes to a window, the depth of the dormer and the colour of the fenestration.


Officers noted that the difference between the previous application and current proposal would not cause harm to the area of special local character or have an impact on neighbouring amenity.


A representative of the planning agent addressed the Committee and made the following points:

·       The representative agreed with the recommendations, and they wanted to re-iterate that the application had worked within the rules. They had worked with the planning department and would continue to do so.

·       The property was on lower ground than the neighbouring properties on either side, the grounds were also sloping backwards and so the impact of the rear extension on neighbouring properties was reduced. The rear extension was of standard height after an error by the architect had been corrected.

·       Materials had been chosen to be in keeping with the local area, with bricks matching in colour and pattern to the original building.

·       It was noted that the works were to improve the family’s living conditions, and there were no plans for an annex.

·       It was noted that the applicant/ agent had tried to comply with all relevant regulations and guidelines and had been in consultation with the planning team.


Members noted that a raised patio had already been constructed (post site visit) and the agent’s representative noted that the existing patio was unsafe and so it was deemed necessary to construct the new one on safety grounds. Officers clarified that they were confident that there would be no overlooking issues subject to Condition 3.


Members asked officers for clarification on the agent’s representative’s comments regarding the sloping on the site. Officers clarified that there was a slope on the front, and that as the property was sited lower than neighbouring properties, there would be no dominating impact on the street scene. It was noted that the garden sloped down towards the back end of the garden, but that this did not impact on the current application.


Members noted their mixed opinions on this application but noted that it was not out-of-sync with the neighbouring properties. The height difference and the slope were noted. The difference between the host dwelling and the extension were noted, while officers clarified that it was not always possible to get a complete brick match. The potential option of conditioning for brick tinting was noted, although it was also noted that this was expensive. The scale of the difference in bricks being reduced by weather implications over time was noted, however, an exact time from for this was difficult to establish. Brick tinting on only the front was suggested. Members questioned if the new door was in keeping with the conservation area. Officers clarified that a future porch, matching windows and a boundary wall meant that the door was acceptable. It was noted that there was a condition for at least 25% of the front garden to be soft landscaped.


Members further noted that the bricks were acceptable due to the darker windows, especially when viewed from a distance. Reference was made to the application going against Policy DMHD1, and officers clarified that a technical breach was deemed permissible as the application did comply with the intention of the policy and complied with the development plan. Members noted that approval of this application was not a typical Committee response when policy breaches occurred.


A verbal update was given to Condition 3 in relation to the submission of details specifying the depth and height of the proposed terrace, relative to the ground levels of adjoining neighbouring properties and existing boundary treatments. The update was to amend the trigger points in that the details should be submitted within one month of the decision, and implementation within two months of the approval of the details.


RESOLVED: That the application be approved.

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