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News Archive > General > Controversial home set for approval

Controversial home set for approval

By Warren Wilkins 22nd November 2017

Controversial home set for approval
The house plans for Island Crescent.

CONTROVERSIAL plans to build a luxury residential property along Newquay’s clifftop are earmarked for approval despite a barrage of opposition.

Planning officer Matthew Sleeman is recommending a proposal to build a single storey two-bedroomed property (right) on land adjacent to 20 Island Crescent should be given the go- ahead. He felt the design, which includes the siting of the home below the existing boundary wall and a sedum finished roof, would sufficiently mitigate the harm the proposed new home would have on the character of the area and ensures that the open views across the site are retained. Mr Sleeman also believes the land is sufficiently stable to accommodate the proposed new home subject to conditions.

Residents and campaign group Save Newquay Cliff Top are vehemently opposing the scheme due to concerns the proposal is garden grabbing, would harm the character of the area and its ecology, would be an overdevelopment of the site, cause additional cliff erosion and because there have been a number of rockfalls in the area.  Newquay Town Council has objected due to concerns the layout and density on an already crowded footprint is overbearing. Supporters of the plans state the proposed home would enhance the coastline, would bring money and jobs to the area and would not interrupt views of the seascape.

A Planning Inspector dismissed the applicant Mr and Mrs Crow’s previous scheme to build a larger detached dwelling on the site because of the effect the development would have on the character and appearance of the area. More than 1,000 people opposed the plans following fears the coastline's cliffs are being overdeveloped and could lead to cliff instability.

A second scheme to build a residential property on the site was also refused, which is subject to a planning appeal.

Cornwall Council’s central sub-area planning committee is due to make a decision on the latest plans at its meeting at County Hall in Truro on Monday, November 27.

Mr Sleeman said: “The proposed dwelling would be set back from the cliff edge to provide a garden area to the property’s front with additional space available to the side.

“The proposed two bedroom dwelling would be dug into the site, which is already lower than the highway, and would have a footprint of some 154 square metres.

“The key differences from this scheme compared to the previously refused application are that the proposed dwelling has been positioned approximately three metres further back from the cliff edge, with its depth reduced by approximately one metre.

“The floor area of the proposal would now be some six square metres less. The height of the development has also been reduced, however this is marginal.

“In respect to surface water drainage, the scheme does involve grey water harvesting as with the last application, however, an attenuation tank would also be provided and any overflow would go to a combined sewer. As such, there would no longer be a requirement for an outfall pipe to extend off the cliff edge.

“The proposed new home is located on a sensitive coastal cliff top location within the built up area of a main town. The proposal will adversely impact upon the character of the area by reducing the openness of the site but, in your case officer’s opinion, the design, which includes the siting of the home below the existing boundary wall and a sedum finished roof, sufficiently mitigates this harm and, importantly, ensures that the open views across the site, including the visual permeability and general perception of openness, are retained.

“The proposal is designed to prevent neighbour impact and to provide adequate amenity space. Subject to condition, the land is sufficiently stable to accommodate the proposed new home.”

Campaigners hope the emerging Neighbourhood Plan, which aims to provide the coastline with greater protection from residential development, could help ensure the plans are turned down but Mr Sleeman states it has little weight for the purposes of the planning decision.

Mr Sleeman said: “A Neighbourhood Plan Designation has been made by Cornwall Council and a neighbourhood plan is in preparation. It is currently at pre-submission stage, due to be submitted for consideration in March 2018, and therefore, its current content could be subject to change. Given its limited stage of preparation, Newquay Neighbourhood Plan has little weight for the purposes of this assessment.”

By Warren Wilkins 22nd November 2017

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