Controversial plans for Sidmouth holiday lodges put forward

Blackdown House, East Devon District Council's Honiton headquarters. Picture: Dan WIlkins

Blackdown House, East Devon District Council's Honiton headquarters. Picture: Dan WIlkins - Credit: Archant

Controversial proposals have been put forward to build two holiday lodges and a hobby room in the grounds of the former Woolbrook Reservoir.

In total, 38 residents have submitted objections to the application seeking permission for three timber buildings – including a two-bedroom lodge, glamping pod and hobby cabin.

The existing site is a private dwelling with neighbouring homes to the north, east and west.

The plans propose to demolish an existing manhole and remove the bank, before building the lodges, extending the parking area and removing a number of trees ‘in poor health’ which will then be replaced with new trees.

The application states the development would have a minimal impact on the existing trees, and the proposal includes the reinstatement of 30 new ones.

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It also notes the chalets are single storey and will be made from timber, so should not have a visual impact on the area.

Ward Councillor Stuart Hughes was among those who objected to the plan on account of the site’s being in a ‘green corridor’ and the effect it would have on the character of the area, neighbours and existing trees.

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He said it would also lead to an increase in traffic on residential roads.

In one of the many letters of objection, Mrs B Mence said: “It will generate additional traffic and parking which will have a detrimental impact on the appearance of the site, as it results in the loss of trees and significant excavation of the planted bank, and new hardstanding to accommodate the additional parking areas...

“Both of the lodges will have raised decking terraces and overlooking windows which will afford views into neighbouring gardens...

“Due to the use of the buildings for holiday accommodation, it is likely that the occupants will be using the external spaces quite intensively, and late into the evenings, increasing the intrusive impact of the development...

“The current landscaped character will be harmed by the introduction of intrusive and highly visible new structures... The larger lodge, in particular, has the appearance of a static caravan...

“At night-time the structures will be highly visible due to light from windows and external decking.”

East Devon District Council will make the final decision.

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