Proposal Description: Erection of two-storey side and rear extensions to dwelling.
The application was introduced. Members were referred to the update sheet which provided a representation from Cllr Fiona Isaacs, one of the ward councillors in support of the application.
During public participation Michael Knappett spoke in support of the application and Councillor David Quirk, Bighton Parish Council spoke in support of the application and answered members' questions.
Councillor Russell Gordon Smith spoke as one of the ward members and expressed several points on behalf of residents which could be summarised as follows:
1. That the design of the proposed development was appropriate to the site and well-presented.
2. That the proposal was supported by the parish council and other residents in the area.
3. That the proposed development would have no significant impact on the surrounding site.
4. That the application hinged on local plan policy DM3, which aimed to keep low-cost housing for young families and that the wording of this policy enabled some flexibility in interpretation.
5. That flexibility existed in policy DM3 to allow a young and expanding family to live there who had been fully involved in the community.
6. That the planning officers had been diligent and thorough in their work, but he urged the committee to overturn the officer's recommendation.
Councillor Margot Power spoke as one of the ward members and expressed several points on behalf of residents which could be summarised as follows:
1. That Apple Tree Cottage was a small, well-designed house in a lovely site, but noted that it was cramped and had limited headroom in the bedrooms.
2. That one unintended consequence of policy DM3 was that medium-sized houses were getting bigger and more expensive, while small houses remained the same size.
3. That the addition of a third bedroom and space to work from home would allow a young family to remain in the area.
4. That the proposed changes would result in a minimal increase in the building's footprint.
5. That the area suffered from a lack of people under 60, and approving the plans would enable a family to stay in the community.
6. That she supported the approval of the plans and asked the committee to permit the proposed development.
The committee proceeded to ask questions and debate the application.
The committee voted against the recommendation to refuse planning permission and instead voted to grant permission for the proposal. In reaching this decision they raised the following planning matters which weighed in favour of granting planning permission:
1. That even though the proposal amounted to a 54% increase, overall, this property would remain a relatively small dwelling.
2. That the proposal did not breach the 3-bedroom threshold.
3. That the community support raised points that the dwelling would remain a relatively small dwelling and did not breach the 3-bedroom threshold should weigh in the planning balance.
4. That no identified harm in design or impact on the landscape was established.
In addition, it was agreed that:
1. This approval should be linked to the original granting of planning permission.
2. That the drafting of relevant conditions and informatives be delegated to the Service Lead – Built Environment in liaison with the Chairperson.