Walberswick fisherman’s cabin to be demolished

NEWSPhotograph Simon Parker 27/9/2011Luke Jeans outside Tows Cabin in Walberswick which he wants to

NEWSPhotograph Simon Parker 27/9/2011Luke Jeans outside Tows Cabin in Walberswick which he wants to replace.

A film-maker has won the right to knock down the fisherman's cabin in Walberswick, near Southwold, that has been in his family for three generations and build a two-storey home.

Luke Jeans succeeded in his second attempt to persuade a district planning committee to allow the destruction of 1930s cottage Tows Cabin in Ferry Road.

Despite receiving 76 objections to the proposal, last week Suffolk Coastal followed the recommendation of planning officers to grant permission for the work to go ahead.

An original application was thrown out by the committee two years ago because the size of the planned building would 'not preserve or enhance the character or appearance of the conservation area', but Mr Jeans returned with an amended plan which lowered the height of the property by half a metre.

On both occasions, the application attracted a number of objections, with letters of disapproval mainly opposed to the appearance and size of the new property in a conservation area near three listed buildings.

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The Emmy-winning film-maker made a three-minute presentation to councillors describing his revised design, which remains keeping within Environment Agency restrictions prohibiting residential development below high tide level.

After the meeting, he said: 'Permission has to be granted or refused based on planning issues, not the number of letters received in objection. I'm pleased the committee has followed recommendations and done just that.

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'It was also stressed that the cabin may lie in a conservation area but is not a listed building.

'I believe the proposal should have gone through in the first place, but I went away and made changes to the design and it has now been approved.

'The hard work starts here. I'll be going through all the plans and building regulations and I hope to get started before the end of the year.'

Suffolk Coastal District Council said the application had been approved based on the submitted planning report, which recognised that Tows Cabin was a 'unique building with some aesthetic appeal' but acknowledged that the proposal complied with both national and local planning policies and should be supported.

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