28 The Drive

Planning Application 181655

Outbuilding at 28 The Drive

Comments from ACER, The Whitegates Residents Association

ACER wishes to Object to this Application

ACER is concerned that the provision of a large outbuilding in the garden fundamentally alters the characteristics of the suburban garden landscape in the neighbourhood, unless the work is done sympathetically to blend in with a garden vista. Currently there is nothing in the Application to suggest that any effort will be made in this regard and therefore ACER object to this Application.

ACER wishes to bring the following points to your attention:

  1. The Borough Design Guide states on page 7 ‘The key priority….as set out in the Core Strategy, is to maintain the quality of environment for local residents….development is required to be : compatible with local character…’
  1. To build a large brick bungalow style building at the bottom of a suburban garden risks being an eyesore to all the local residents unless measures are taken to blend it in with a garden vista.
  1. Measures that can be taken to blend in such a building are as follows
    1. .To use brown UPVC for windows, doors, fascias, barge boards and guttering as this blends in, in contrast to White UPVC which stands out and attracts the eye.
    2. To use vegetation to screen all sides of the outbuilding.
    3. To use similar colour bricks as used on the main property, or, preferably timber cladding of the style used on garden summer houses
    4. Alternatively, to install a timber summerhouse style building in preference to a brick built property. There are many attractive styles and they are often fitted out with gym equipment.
  1. The walls of the property are not set back from the property boundary at the rear or at each side. One wall is currently joined to a neighbours outbuilding to form a terraced bungalow effect.  All walls should be inset by one metre to allow for screening vegetation plus allow maintenance accessibility. This screening and setting back from the boundary on all sides should be a condition of acceptance.
  1. It should be noted that such outbuildings are classed as ‘ancillary dwellings’ to the main property.  The use of such outbuildings for sleeping accommodation by family members is permitted. A  shower room is included in the plans. If it is not the intention of WBC to allow the outbuilding to be regularly used as sleeping accommodation, then a no-sleeping provision should be stated as a condition of any approval.

In summary, the existing outbuilding as proposed stands out in a suburban garden environment, looking more like an out of place residential terraced bungalow than a garden building. Conditions including setting back from the boundary, colour and appearance of materials, plus provision of soft landscape screening all around the building and preclusion of use as a residence are required if it is minded to approve this Application.

Planning Application on WDC website