Monday, 20 January 2020

Neighbours facing fresh fight to stop two new houses

NEIGHBOURS are facing a fresh battle to stop two new houses being built in a Wargrave street.

Rob Riddout and Nigel Dearman have applied for planning permission to build the two-bedroom properties in Victoria Road, near the junction with Hamilton Road, with parking space for four cars.

The development would involve the demolition of an existing house.

The applicants were given permission in April last year to build a three-storey property with five bedrooms on the land despite opposition from both residents and the parish council.

Now they say the neighbours have nothing to be concerned about.

A design and access statement submitted with the application to Wokingham Borough Council says: “The proposed dwellings have been sited to maintain an acceptable relationship with neighbouring dwellings and… as far towards Victoria Road as possible in order to create a degree of separation.

“The design and siting have been carefully considered to ensure that there is no detrimental impact upon the character of the area or the amenity of neighbouring dwellings.

“Sufficient parking can be provided… and there would be no resulting highway safety issues.”

Neighbours who opposed the previous application said the development would lead to more traffic which would affect road safety in the area.

Samantha Barnard, of Blakes Lane, said the site was on a very busy corner leading to the village schools.

She said: “The parking situation on this corner is already very dangerous and cars already have to pull into the opposite side of the road when turning into Hamilton Road.

“By increasing the number of units there is a very real risk of there being even more parking and traffic.” Peter Emms, who lives on Hamilton Road, said: “The junction is especially busy with the chemist immediately around the corner and the doctor’s surgery just opposite attracting many parked cars.

“As a result, parking [space] in the road is already very difficult to find, particularly for the frail and elderly who need to park close to both.”

Deborah Lancaster, also of Hamilton Road, said: “The potential for a significant increase in traffic on an already busy road is a major concern. The extra traffic would pose a significant danger, especially in the peak times when both schools, doctors and chemist tend to be busiest.”

Wargrave Parish Council is due to discuss the latest application on January 20 and will make a recommendation to the borough council, which will make the final decision.

Meanwhile, parish councillors have objected to a couple’s plans for a new bungalow in Wargrave. John and Julie Dowling want to build the two-storey property behind two existing homes in Highfield Park that they own.

Their planning statement says: “There is already a single-storey backland form of development from which this new property would take its access from Hanover Gardens.

“The fact that there are already buildings extending up to the boundary of the countryside means that there would not be any erosion of landscape or character or harm to the site.”

But councillors said this would be overdevelopment of the site and the flat roof would be out of keeping with the neighbouring properties.

They also raised concerns about road safety for the mainly elderly residents of neighbouring Hanover Gardens.

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