Agenda item

Application no 170794 - Land to the rear of 39 and 41 Lowther Road, Wokingham, RG41 1JB

Recommendation:  Conditional Approval


Proposal:  Full application for the proposed erection of 2no detached 4xbedroom two storey dwellings and new access driveway.


Applicant:  Mr Francis


The Committee received and reviewed a report about this application, set out in Agenda pages 53 to 80.


The Committee were advised that the Members’ Update included:


·           Revisions to the street scene section plan relating to the front elevation;

·           Additional comments on the plans and Officer responses to same, and

·           Proposed amendments to Conditions 2, 6 and 9.


Members had visited the site on 8 September 2017.


Martin Battersby, Embrook residents Association, shared a presentation and spoke in opposition to the application, stating that the proposed development went against the Borough Design Guide due to being a backland development, its size and the degree of overlooking, and would cause harm to the amenity of the existing residents. 


Frederick Randall, agent, spoke in favour of the scheme, stated that the application had been amended in response to concerns from local residents and in discussion with planning officers.  The principle windows faced away from neighbouring properties and the development, as a whole was similar in size to others in the area and provide two efficient and sustainable homes.


Ulla-Karin Clark, Ward Member, spoke against the application, stating that backland developments were not supported by Members.  A previous application on the site submitted in 2006 had been refused as overbearing and out of character and the proposal contravened the Borough Design Guide.


In response, the Case Officer stated that there had been two applications in 2006.  One had been for three dwellings with smaller gardens.  It had contravened standards and had been rejected.  The second had been refused due to lack of infrastructure, namely the lack of submission of a section 106.  Members discussed the wording of the Design Guide in relation to backland development at some length.


In response to Member questions regarding access to the properties, the Service Manager, Highways Development Management, stated that number 43 had a large driveway and there was no need for them to have to park on the access road. 


The Committee voted against the recommendation that the application be approved.


Councillor Rachelle Shepherd-DuBey proposed that the application be refused on the grounds that the proposed backland development would result in an unacceptable degree of overlooking from windows in the new dwellings, which would be harmful to the amenity of existing residential propertiesadjoining the site. As such, the proposal is contrary to Policy CP3 of the Core Strategy, Policy TB06 of the Managing Development Delivery Document and Sections 4.7 and 4.10 of the Borough Design Guide


The proposal was seconded by Councillor Philip Houldsworth.


Resolved:  That Application no 170794 be refused on the grounds listed above.



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