In an appeal decision which permitted a block of ten flats in Maidenhead, the Planning Inspector accepted our submissions that the proposal was consistent with the core principles of the National Planning Policy Framework 2012 which requires that planning should take account of the character of different areas and always seek to secure high quality design and a good standard of amenity for all existing and future occupants of land and buildings.
The scheme was considered to accord with the requirements of Policies DG1, H10 and H11 of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead Local Plan in that the scheme was of a high standard of design; the design and scale of new buildings was compatible with the established street façade having regard to the scale, height and building lines of adjacent properties; and no harm was caused to the character of the surrounding area. (Architects: Edgington Spink and Hyne)
Planning permission has been successfully negotiated, following pre application discussions with Wokingham District Council, for the erection of four houses. The final scheme was considered to be acceptable in all respects and to conform to the character of the area.
On May 30th, the Government changed the General Permitted Development Order which introduced new rules allowing the change from B1 office use to C3 residential use, subject to prior approval from the local authority. The Government claimed it had introduced the new office permitted development rights to boost economic growth and create more homes. This appears to be working as Carter Planning have already obtained agreement to convert office buildings to residential units in Hammersmith, Reading, Reigate, and Newbury.
The change of use from offices to residential is subject to a “prior approval” process where the proposed change of use could have significant transport and highways impact, or the development is within a safety hazard zone, or area of high flood risk and land contamination. Under the prior approval process, the Council is notified of the change and decides whether to permit or refuse it. A fee of £80 is required. If refused, a full planning application would have to be submitted to convert the premises.
Planning permission will also be required where the consequential changes of the change of use result in material external alterations to the building.
Seventeen councils have won exemptions to the new rights, which are in place temporarily for three years.
Planning permission has been obtained to remodel and extend a large house within a Conservation Area and in a sensitive location overlooking the River Thames in Berkshire.
Two commercial barns and a farmhouse in multiple occupation in the Berkshire Green Belt have been approved for conversion to dwellings and flats respectively following a successful appeal. The Planning Inspector agreed that the development was appropriate under the Governments new National Planning Policy Framework’s policies on the Green Belt.