Controversial home plan for Bawburgh rejected

Controversial plans to redevelop a house and cottage which inspired a 371-signature petition against the scheme were thrown out last night.

Applicants Tom and Jan Hubbard plans to convert the Coach House in Stocks Hill, Bawburgh, into a single one-and-half-storey home and remove a section of the boundary wall for vehicular access were refused by South Norfolk Council's planning committee at a packed meeting, despite planning officers recommending approval.

The council received 71 letters from villagers opposed to the proposals on the grounds the development would have an effect on neighbouring homes, including listed buildings in a conservation area and the wall that was being altered was historic and should be preserved.

Concerns were also raised about plans to incorporate neighbouring Forge Cottage into the plans by providing a mono roof car part on the east side of the building.

Although villagers accepted the cottage was not listed, they wanted the cottage to be preserved as it was one of the more historic landmarks. Cars coming out of the access road were also a worry for residents who feared the vehicle lights would shine into living rooms.

Bawburgh resident Terry Molloy said: '371 people are opposed to this development which would damage the heritage assets within the conservation area. The application proposes the demolition of an old and prominent wall in Bawburgh.

'This is one of the key vistas in the village and a historic asset that makes the village special. The development would damage key features within the conservation area.'

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Fellow resident Prof David Fowler raised concerns about Forge Cottage, while David Goodman, who lives in the listed building opposite the proposed development entrance, called for 'common sense' to prevail.

However, the applicant's agent said the entrance would be in a 'dip' and the vehicle lights would not shine on the homes opposite and the applicants had worked with the project architects to provide a suitable development.

Following the meeting, Mr Goodman said: 'The council has made a common sense decision on the many factors presented to them over a long period of time.'

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