Saturday, 05 December 2020

Neighbour angry as new house is finally approved

PLANS for a new house in Whitchurch Hill have been approved at the fourth attempt.

PLANS for a new house in Whitchurch Hill have been approved at the fourth attempt.

Developer Kingfisher First, of Woodley, has been given permission to build the two-storey property next to Rose Cottage in Hill Bottom Road.

The two-bedroon house will occupy a plot measuring 250 square metres, including a driveway with space for two cars.

The first planning application was submitted in 2006 but withdrawn before South Oxfordshire District Council considered it. A second was submitted later that year but was turned down because it was against council policy to allow “infill” development in the village.

The applicant, a Mr M Wallace, from Purley, appealed but was unsuccessful.

The third application was submitted by Kingfisher last year by which time the council had changed its policy on infill developments.

However, the council rejected it on the grounds that the house would be too big and represent overdevelopment of the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

The company appealed but was unsuccessful.

For the latest application, Kingfisher reduced the proposed footprint of the house from 60 square metres to 46 and moved it a further two metres from the roadside.

Ann Bland, who lives in Rose Cottage, urged the council to turn it down, saying the back of her house would still be overlooked.

She said: “This proposed building would have an overwhelming impact on the aspects and amenities of Rose Cottage and appears cramped and out of keeping.

“It would have an urbanising impact on the site which would detract from the rural character of the area.”

She was supported by Goring Heath Parish Council chairman Peter Dragonetti and the village’s district councillors Pearl Slatter and Ann Ducker.

All three spoke when the application was debated by the district council’s planning committee. Cllr Slatter said: “This is overdevelopment and unneighbourly. Quite frankly, the plot is only just large enough for a shed. When you look it at it you think, ‘my goodness, are we really going to put a house in there?’”

But Councillor John Cotton said: “There are lots of examples where far smaller dwellings are proving practical in terms of design and in terms of demand.”

The committee approved the application by seven votes to six.

* More than 90 people have objected to an application by pub company Brakspear to a build a house in the beer garden at the Sun Inn, about 200ft from Rose Cottage.

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