Family refused planning permission for ‘dream home’

A family’s hopes of creating their dream home were dashed as their planning application was refused.

Neighbours had lent their support to Rob Hogley’s application to demolish a seven-bedroom “arts and crafts” style house in Dyke Road Avenue and replace it with a five-bedroom home.

The house was described as contributing positively to the Tongdean Conservation area and officials recommended refusing the scheme.

Mr Hogley wanted to build a neo-Georgian style house with hints of art deco architecture in its place but the proposal was considered unsuitable for the conservation area.

Mr Hogley said that his family had lived in the city for 10 years and wanted to build their dream home.

He said: “For the last 15 months I’ve been working with the best architect in the city to create a sustainable family home to the highest specification – a house that is respectful of the local area and a place I would be proud to call my home.

“During this process we have been speaking with local neighbours and part of the reason we are here today is because of their support.”

Architect Lap Chan, a director at Morgan Carn, told the council’s Planning Committee that there would be little impact on the Tongdean Conservation Area because the original house was not nationally or locally listed.

He said that there was no evidence that the house had been designed by Charles Vosey, a suggestion made by some objectors.

Mr Chan said that the Tongdean Conservation Area had houses with a substantial footprint, set back from the road, with front gardens and drives, and screened by mature trees.

Green councillor Tom Druitt asked why the family did not retain the existing building as it looked like a nice house.

Mr Chan described it as “tired” and said that it had been sub-divided and altered, making it difficult to “perform thermally”.

Conservative councillor Joe Miller said that he found it quite difficult due to the heritage element, although there had been a lot of conversions along Dyke Road Avenue.

He said: “I recognise you could do the building up and return it to its former glory but that will only happen if someone is willing to pay for it.

“I have sympathy with the applicant because they want a family home but appreciate there might be some harm to the conservation area.

“But the screening on the front and the number of trees that are going to be retained you’re not going to see them anyway.”

Labour councillor Daniel Yates said that that area of Dyke Road Avenue had been “severely affected” by the changes to the properties over a number of years.

He said: “I’m not convinced necessarily that one more lost property would adversely affect the nature of the conservation area.

“But at the same time it would clearly affect that part of the conservation area and the look of it, no matter how much screening there is.

“Other than putting the property in a paper bag you’re not going to limit the impact of that property going in.”

He did not think it was an improvement or particularly doing anything to the nature of the conservation area.

Councillor Druitt congratulated the owner for trying to keep as many trees as possible, particularly two elms.

He said: “I do think it comes down to two things – one being the loss of the existing house. I really do feel would be a loss to the area.

“I’m not convinced by the argument that it needs to be removed at this stage.”

  1. Nick Reply

    How ridiculous to refuse this application, which was backed by neighbours and the local conservation group. We have some of the oldest housing stock in Europe – inefficient, costly to maintain and in some cases left to rot. This isn’t a listed building. I hope they get their revised plans past the planning department.

    • TP Reply

      I agree, totally ridiculous. I had no idea there was a Tongdean conservation area especially when you see the number of new build properties and look at some of the changes made to existing properties over a number of years. How did some of those get through planning? Nobody is going to want to spend a huge amount of money renovating what is essentially a very ugly house not to mention the number of hoops you would have to jump through to satisfy the planning department even though the original house was not nationally or locally listed as of any importance. If it was that important surely a conservation group would step in to save it.

    • Gary Reply

      Absolutely ridiculous .
      The house should be knocked down.
      It is tired with very little insulation.
      The plan for the new house look fantastic.
      Surely there i only 1 way foward

  2. SamC Reply

    Draughty, damp, poorly insulated. Not fit for the 21st Century. The house should be knocked down. Hope they win on appeal. Stupidity again from Planning department that is committed to hampering ecologically friendly development in the city. The pervasive lack of double glazing in conservation areas speaks volumes about this obstructive, myopic ecologically ignorant Planning department.

  3. TomH Reply

    What are these councillors smoking – there is frankly nothing “conservation” about Dyke Road Avenue. I fail to see the issue with this given broad based support of the neighbours, a proactive attempt to keep mature trees and a desire replace a tired and run-down property with what appears to be a high quality, no expense spared design.

    I can empathise with the challenges Mr Hogley is facing as I’ve had similarly frustrating interactions with the council on planning matters and incurred thousands (tens of thousands) in unnecessary costs.

  4. Victor Meldrew Reply

    The poor have to live in worse conditions and no one is suggesting knocking their houses down. In fact there was a vote in Parliament two or three years ago to make it illegal for landlords to rent out properties that are unfit for human habitation. A these MPs voted the bill down. You can guess which snout-in-the-trough party they were from:

    According to Parliament’s register of interests, the 72 MPs who are registered as deriving income from property of over £10,000 a year and who voted against the law are:

    Nigel Adams

    Stuart Andrew

    Victoria Atkins

    Jake Berry

    James Berry

    Bob Blackman

    Robert Buckland

    Alun Cairns

    David Cameron

    Alex Chalk

    James Cleverley

    Geoffrey Clifton-Brown

    Therese Coffey

    Geoffrey Cox

    Mims Davies

    Philip Davies

    Richard Drax

    James Duddridge

    Alan Duncan

    Philip Dunne

    Jane Ellison

    George Eustice

    Mike Freer

    Richard Fuller

    John Glen

    Robert Goodwill

    Chris Grayling

    Dominic Grieve

    Chris Heaton-Harris

    Peter Heaton-Jones

    George Hollingberry

    Kevin Hollinrake

    Philip Hollobone

    Nick Hurd

    Stewart Jackson

    Margot James

    Sajid Javid

    Joseph Johnson

    Simon Kirby (teller)

    Greg Knight

    Brandon Lewis

    Julian Lewis

    Craig Mackinlay

    Tania Mathias

    Karl McCartney

    Anne Marie Morris

    Sheryll Murray

    Robert Neill

    Sarah Newton (teller)

    Jesse Norman

    David Nuttall

    Neil Parish

    Owen Paterson

    Rebecca Pow

    Jeremy Quin

    Jacob Rees-Mogg

    Laurence Robertson

    Julian Smith

    Royston Smith

    Mark Spencer

    John Stevenson

    Desmond Swayne

    Derek Thomas

    Anne-Marie Trevelyan

    Andrew Turner

    Shailesh Vara

    Theresa Villiers

    Ben Wallace

    David Warburton

    Craig Whittaker

    John Whittingdale

    Nadhim Zahawi

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