PLANNERS have rejected a second attempt to develop a small back garden in a Winchester suburb.

A developer reapplied for a two-bedroom house on the corner of Silwood Close and Bereweeke Road, Weeke.

A similar scheme was rejected in May 2017 with councillors on the planning committee saying it was too cramped a site.

The design is modern with white render and timber cladding and the new scheme has a smaller footprint and is sunk into the ground, lowering its profile.

This scheme has been controversial with 24 letters of objection and three of support.

Planning officers at the city council had been recommending approval but it came to committee because of the number of objections.

Kim Blunt spoke against the proposal. She said: “The plot is too small, intrusive on the street scene and out of character. The site would be gloomy and cramped. There would be pressure to fell the nearby beech tree.”

Deborah Wilshire, of nearby Pinehurst Place, spoke of the traffic hazard of cars entering and exiting the site. “There’s an accident waiting to happen on a very busy road.”

Local ward councillor Anne Weir said: “A neighbourhood design statement is a growing problem in this area. This application is part of a growing pattern that is difficult to control.

“The cumulative impact on local character, public realm and road safety and green infrastructure is not being addressed sufficiently.”

Jeremy Tyrell, of T2 Architects, for the applicants, only listed as Mr and Mrs Lewis, said it was a high-quality contemporary design commensurate with other nearby schemes such as the Cube House on Stockbridge Road and in Hatherley Road.

“It is in keeping with the evolving style of Winchester and will give an opportunity to a young couple or retirees who would otherwise be unable to live in the city.”

Mr Tyrell said meetings with planning officers had deemed that the plot was developable. “We were encouraged to design something interesting and exciting.”

Cllr Angela Clear said: “It is an interesting design but it does not respect the character of the neighbourhood.”

Cllr Patrick Cunningham said: “It looks like an electricity sub-station. It is a prominent site and is shoe horned in. There is no local support for this development.”

Cllr Michael Read said he would support the officers as the developers had made important changes to the scheme.

The committee voted seven votes to two against the plan to a burst of applause from the public gallery.