Greenwich Council

Agenda item.

32 Kidbrooke Gardens, Blackheath, London, SE3 0PD

Planning permission is sought for the construction of a single storey rear/side extension. The proposal is a resubmission following the refusal of planning application 15/0831/F.

Decision:

That full planning permission is granted for the construction of a single storey rear/side extension in line with the conditions set out in the report and the additional conditions in respect of;

·       That the bedroom windows in the east elevation looking towards the rear garden of 34 Kidbrooke Garden will be obscured glazed.

·       That additional, landscaping be planted along the boundary with 34 Kidbrooke Garden.

 

And that a planning informative stating that the proposed development was approved taking into consideration the existing outbuilding/garage situated on site and the proposal does not set a precedent for similar developments.

Minutes:

The Area Planning Manager (West) gave an illustrated presentation, advising the Committee that the rear garden was 11 metres wide by 13 metres deep, with an existing outbuilding on-site, which would be demolished as part of the application.  That the new build would be set at a minimum of 4.4 metres off the boundary to 34 Kidbrooke Gardens and noted that if it were built under permitted development, could be built up to the boundary and could measure 3 metres in depth to a maximum height of 4 metres by 10 metres.  He confirmed that the height of the proposed building had been reduced to 3.7 metres and the scale and bulk had all been reduced and it was felt that the redesign was more in keeping with the existing building.

 

The Area Planning Manager (West) reminded the Committee that, with regards to the impact on the conservation area, in this case the main consideration would be if they felt that the impact of the new development would be greater than that of the building currently existing on-site.

 

In response to Members’ questions the Area Planning Manager (West) confirmed that acoustic and sound insulation was not a normal issue of consideration in residential developments, and would be dealt with under building regulations.

 

He confirmed that agreement had been reached to provide obscured glazing to the bedroom windows to the east elevation, looking towards the rear garden of 34 Kidbrooke Gardens.

 

The Committee accepted addresses from four speakers, including the occupant of 34 Kidbrooke Gardens, a representative from the Blackheath Park Conservation Group and a representative from the Blackheath Society, who all spoke individually in objection to the application. 

 

Objections were raised on the basis of the bulk and scale of the extension which it was felt to be an overdevelopment which dwarfed the existing building on site in terms of height; width and length.  Further, that the adjustments to roof profile was an improvement but that it was strongly felt that the changes made did not overcome the previous reasons for refusal. 

 

Speakers felt that the application to replace a garage with a bungalow was in line with previously submitted applications.

 

That there would be overlooking to and by neighbouring properties, to the living room area of the extension.  Further, that the development would be over dominant in the garden space, destroying the architectural symmetry of the property; character and appearance and that there would be an impact on light to neighbouring properties and loss of garden area. 

 

Speakers accepted that the conifer trees on the garden boundary would give some privacy, but the remainder of the boundary was low fencing and easy to see through.  Further, if further foliage was lost or removed the screening there now could be eliminated.

 

It was believed that gardens were an integral aspect of the conservation area and should not be diminished and the conservation areas were being stripped away.

 

It was felt that the proposed building was an incongruous development, looking like an afterthought and not a positive character for the conservation and did not enhance the conservation area.

 

In response to Members’ questions the public speakers confirmed that there was foliage and some deciduous foliage along the border between 32 and 34 Kidbrooke Gardens but were concerned at overlooking and intrusion and expressed that obscured glazing to the extension would be beneficial.

 

The Area Planning Manager (West) responded to Members, advising that there had been a significant change in the height and bulk of the proposed building. 

 

He continued that the Committee needed to consider if the existing, corrugated roof to the building currently on site, was more beneficial to the Conservation Area than the proposed development or that the proposed development would, in some way, damage the character of the area that the existing building did not.  Further, that the proposed building, whilst being wider, would not be deeper and 250 square metres of garden space would remain which it was felt would not impact on the fill of the plot.  He added that as this was a conservation area removal of trees required permission. 

 

The Committee accepted an address by the applicant’s daughter on behalf of the applicant.  She advised that the proposed extension was to provide an independent living area for her father with flexible access for carers in the long term. 

 

She assured the Committee and speakers that it was not their intention to cause distress to neighbours but also noted that under permitted development they could build an extension 4 metres high and abutting the boundary with the neighbouring properties, but they felt that this would be ugly, out of keeping with the house and not acceptable. 

 

She advised that the pitched roof was based on the original roof design of the garage, which was being replaced.   Further, that the area was a patchwork of styles of housing and that they felt that the extension was in keeping with the original house whilst providing care in the community.

 

In response to Members’ questions, she confirmed that they would be replanting the flowerbed in front of the extension, as well as planting more trees and overgrowth along the boundary. 

 

In considering the application, Members noted that if the application was approved the bedroom area of the extension would be fitted with obscured glazed.  Further, that the applicant was willing to increase the boundary screening with appropriate planting. 

 

Members appreciated the speakers concerns as to the size of the extension but also noted that the applicant could build a reasonably large extension to the rear of their property under permitted development.  Further, it was felt that the proposed development was not as detrimental to the conservation area as the building currently on site. 

 

Concern was expressed that granting permission may be setting a precedent but the properties in the area were generally not uniform with the exception of the application address and two adjacent properties being on the same uniform design with pre-existing garage areas.  However, it was felt that the development would not cause any discernible harm to the aspect of these three properties or the conservation area. 

 

With the additional conditions on planting of foliage and fitting of obscuring glazing, the matter was put to the vote;

 

For - 4;   Against – 0;   Abstaining – 2

 

Resolved -

 

1.     That it be agreed that full planning permission be granted for the construction of a single storey rear/side extension in line with the conditions set out in the report and the additional conditions in respect of;

·       That the bedroom windows in the east elevation looking towards the rear garden of 34 Kidbrooke Gardens will be obscured glazed.

·       That additional, landscaping be planted along the boundary with 34 Kidbrooke Gardens.

 

2.     That it be agreed that a planning informative stating that the proposed development was approved taking into consideration the existing outbuilding/garage situated on site and the proposal do not set a precedent for similar developments.

Supporting documents: