A SCHEME to add a storey to a bungalow and build a new garage in Winchester has been approved, despite neighbours' objections. 

Peter Arnold applied for the work in Lainston Close, Weeke.

The application was controversial among neighbours who said it was too large and out of character for the street.

However, Winchester City Council's planning committee permitted the development on Wednesday, November 15. 

In the planning officers' report, it said: “The proposed dwelling extension and garage are considered to have an impact on the visual amenities of the area from the altered appearance and scale of the property. However, it is considered that this impact will be very localised to the immediate area and on that basis the recommendation is to approve as it cannot be demonstrated that there will be a harmful impact of significant detriment to the prevailing and wider character of the area. 

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“The upgrade to the older housing stock with sustainable enhancements is considered to be well contained within its own plot at the end of the close and without detrimental to the surrounding residential amenities and for this reason is recommended for approval.”

Hampshire Chronicle: Bungalow design

Neighbour Julian Carlick spoke in objection. He said: “Lainston Close is a small close of bungalows. The proposal will be 2m higher than the other houses. The close has no through traffic or double garages. No consultation took place with the neighbours prior to the application. The materials do nothing to enhance the close.

“The siting of the garage is particularly bad. Building in front gardens is not appropriate. This would damage our amenity. The design needs to fit in with the rest of the close. We are a tight-knit community.”

Cllr Kelsie Learney said: “The close is a small cul-de-sac. The planning statement for this was only added six months after the application was submitted. It should be the starting point. The mass of the building is an issue. The garage is also problematic. It will be higher than the neighbour's bungalow with different materials.”

The applicant Mr Arnold said: “Extensions in the close are very normal. What we are doing is essential to bring a dilapidated bungalow up to modern standards. It's falling apart and needs to be rebuilt. We want to future-proof it for the next 50 years. 

“It's wholly in keeping with the character of the area.”

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The committee agreed to add an extra condition for a landscape plan. 

Cllr Brian Laming said: “The garage is too high. It will have a massive impact on the area. I can't support this.”

Cllr Michael Read said: “It's a peculiarly shaped site. I can see no planning reasons to refuse this.”

Cllr Chris Edwards said: “I welcome the new condition. It goes some way to mitigate the bulk of the house.”

The application was permitted with seven votes for, one against and one abstention.