Saturday, 13 August 2022

Councillors clash over colleague's conversion

HENLEY town councillors have clashed over a planning application submitted by a colleague.

Glen Lambert and his wife Anna want to extend and convert the garage at their home in Greys Road it into a “granny flat”.

But at meeting of the town council’s planning committee, Councillor Sam Evans objected to the loss of parking space.

She said: “We’re losing a parking space and potentially gaining another car owner or maybe two — a couple could live in a flat. With parking an absolute premium in this town, I couldn’t support this, I’m afraid.”

But Mayor Kellie Hinton said: “It’s not an active parking space. I believe in that particular area there’s sufficient parking and I see no grounds to refuse this.” Cllr Evans proposed recommending refusal and Cllr Hinton proposed recommending approval but neither had a seconder.

Cllr Evans said: “So everybody’s going to abstain because you know him? This is a parking issue.”

Deputy Mayor Lorraine Hillier said: “It is difficult. You get this at the district council where you know the councillor and it’s awfully difficult to speak on it. In my instance, he’s a customer so I’m abstaining.”

Cllr Hinton then proposed that the committee recorded having no strong views but Evans said: “I do not believe we have no strong views.”

Cllr Hinton and Councillor Stefan Gawrysiak voted to register no strong views, Cllr Evans voted against and Cllr Hillier abstained.

South Oxfordshire District Council is set to make the final decision by October 11.

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