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Saturday, 30 October 2010

Badgers Sett : Appeal decision

Appeal Decision
Site visit made on 14 September 2010
by K E Down MA(Oxon) MSc MRTPI MBS
The Planning Inspectorate
4/11 Eagle Wing
Temple Quay House
2 The Square
Temple Quay
Bristol BS1 6PN
0117 372 6372
an Inspector appointed by the Secretary of State
for Communities and Local Government
Decision date:
22 September 2010
Appeal Ref: APP/J1860/D/10/2134076
Badgers Sett, Morton Green, Welland, Worcestershire, WR13 6LR
• The appeal is made under section 78 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990
against a refusal to grant planning permission
• The appeal is made by P Garland against the decision of Malvern Hills District Council
• The application Ref 10/00638/HOU, dated 14 May 2010, was refused by notice dated 28
July 2010
• The development proposed is a domestic extension
Application for Costs
1. An application for costs was made by P Garland against Malvern Hills District
Council. This application is the subject of a separate decision.
2. I allow the appeal, and grant planning permission for a domestic extension at
Badgers Sett, Morton Green, Welland, Worcestershire, WR13 6LR in accordance
with the terms of the application, Ref 10/00638/HOU, dated 14 May 2010,
subject to the following conditions:
1) The development hereby permitted shall begin not later than three years
from the date of this decision.
2) The development hereby permitted shall be carried out in accordance
with the following approved plans: 978-001A, 978-002, 978-004, 978-
005, 978-006, 978-007, 978-008 and 978-009
3) The materials to be used in the construction of the external surfaces of
the extension hereby permitted shall match those used in the existing

Main issue
3. There is one main issue which is the effect of the proposed extension on the
character and appearance of the original and the existing dwelling and the
surrounding countryside.

4. The appeal property, Badgers Sett is set in substantial grounds near the edge
of a scarp slope and has wide ranging views to the south east and south west.
It is well screened from land to the rear, which lies within the Malvern Hills
Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), by existing vegetation. The
dwelling was originally a small cottage but has been significantly extended on a
Appeal Decision APP/J1860/D/10/21340762
number of occasions in the past and is now a substantial house. In
consequence much of the original cottage is masked by extensions and its
character has been considerably altered. However, part of the original front
elevation and one original side remain visible.

5. The proposed extension would result in a further significant enlargement of the
property. Nevertheless, the scale and design of the extension would be broadly
in keeping with that of the existing dwelling, it would have no material effect
on the living conditions of neighbours and it would not in my view adversely
affect the character or quality of the area or any important landscape or
topographical features, notwithstanding that it would be visible from a local
footpath. I therefore find no conflict with Policies DS3 and QL1 of the adopted
Malvern Hills District Local Plan 1996 – 2011 which expect new buildings to
respect and be appropriate to the surrounding area, including the immediate
setting and landscape character.

6. However, the extension would materially affect parts of the original building. It
would bring forward and replace part of the original front elevation and would
substantially alter the existing mixed, single storey and two storey side
elevation, replacing it with a uniform two storey wall and concealing that part
of the original dwelling which is currently visible. It would therefore conflict
with Policy CN9 (a) which requires extensions to be subordinate to the original
dwelling and not substantially alter their original character. Notwithstanding the
effect of the previous extensions, this policy conflict indicates that a further
extension to the dwelling would be inappropriate and that the appeal should
not succeed unless material considerations indicate otherwise. Of most
significance is the fallback position.

7. In March 2010 the Council approved a Certificate of Lawfulness for a
substantial extension to the front elevation of the dwelling. This would in part
cover the same footprint as the appeal scheme but would extend the dwelling
further forward, well beyond the existing front building line, and would be
larger and more visually intrusive than the appeal proposal. It would
incorporate a large expanse of glazing which would be uncharacteristic on the
principle elevation. Overall the extension would dominate and materially harm
the front of the building and would be the most prominent feature when viewed
from the nearby public footpath. Nevertheless, when seen from the side, part
of the original dwelling would remain visible, a fact to which the Council
attached significant weight. However, it would be dwarfed by the proposed
extension, which would have a higher ridge and eaves and would have an
awkward juxtaposition with the original roof.

8. The lawful extension would provide a spacious and practical internal layout and
I consider that there is a significant possibility that it would be built. This would
result in a dwelling that was larger than the appeal scheme and an extension
which, in my view, not only failed to be subordinate to or sympathetic with the
original cottage but also significantly harmed the character and appearance of
the existing dwelling and was materially detrimental to the character of the
surrounding area. I therefore find that substantial weight should be afforded to
this fallback position which I consider to be sufficient to outweigh the conflict
with Policy CN9 (a) that I have identified.
Appeal Decision APP/J1860/D/10/21340763

9. I conclude on the main issue that the materially detrimental effect that the
proposed extension would have on the character and appearance of the original
dwelling is clearly outweighed by the curtailing of the risk that the lawful,
fallback extension, which would have a seriously harmful effect on the
character and appearance of the existing dwelling and the surrounding
countryside, might be built. For this reason the appeal should be allowed.
10. The Council has suggested a condition requiring the proposed extension to be
built using materials which match the existing dwelling. This is necessary in
order to preserve the appearance of the dwelling and the surrounding area. In
addition, a condition requiring that the development is carried out in
accordance with the approved plans is necessary for the avoidance of doubt
and in the interests of proper planning.

11. Third parties, including the Parish Council, have raised objections to the appeal
proposal because they consider that the dwelling has been enlarged enough
already, that the proposed extensions would fail to comply with adopted Local
Plan policy and that the appellant is attempting to gain permission by
threatening to build something worse. However, the lawfulness of the larger
extension has been established and as such the appellant is entitled to exercise
his right to build it. This is a material planning consideration which I have found
to be of sufficient weight to justify allowing the appeal.

12. For the reasons set out above and having regard to all other matters raised I
conclude that the appeal should be allowed.
K E Down

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