Residents make their case for ‘out of character’ dwelling in Sidmouth road

Residents and councillors have voiced their concerns about a proposed development in Woolbrook Park.

Residents and councillors have voiced their concerns about a proposed development in Woolbrook Park. Picture: Sam Cooper - Credit: Archant

Proposals to build a three bedroom property within a bungalow residential area have been labelled as ‘too big’ and ‘out of character’.

Members of Sidmouth Town Council’s planning committee unanimously objected to the proposed dwelling in the grounds of 18 Woolbrook Park as the scale, level and intensity of the development were ‘incompatible’ with the area’s character and that the proposed conversion would affect neighbours’ amenities.

The application also seeks permission for an attached garage, driveway and rear garden.

Residents from the road packed in to last Wednesday’s planning meeting to slam the plans amid fears of loss of privacy and over development in a residential area.

A Mr Bainbridge told the meeting: “The whole visual aspect of Woolbrook Park will change completely with an overbearing new structure near the brow of the hill standing out like a sore thumb.

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“In Woolbrook Park we look at our councillors both town and district to protect us from these unnecessary and unneeded developments helping us to maintain our privacy and character of our wonderful neighbourhood.”

A previous application was submitted last year for the site to extend and convert the bungalow and build a detached property to create two holiday lets and one private dwelling, a new detached garage and additional parking - but was refused.

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Councillor Ian McKenzie-Edwards said: “Almost every aspect of this application would be detrimental except to the aspirations of the applicant.

“This is a very well laid out residential development, each building sits in its own curtilage and this defines the character of Woolbrook Park.

“If this application was to succeed, and I sincerely hope it won’t, in this form or in any form, this would destroy this particular part of Woolbrook Park’s character.”

Councillor Sheila Kerridge, ward member, said she had never received so many objections, adding: “It’s on a very steep hill, it’s on the brow and it’s very close to a junction. In my view a proposed new dwelling will appear to be far too big for the size of the existing plot. This could make a property overbearing and out of character with all its neighbours. It really would stand out.”

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