Agenda item

DC/19/1226 - Rambledown House, Common Hill, West Chiltington

Ward: West Chiltington, Thakenham and Ashington

Applicant: Mr A Harrison


The Chairman of the Committee, along with those Councillors who had declared a prejudicial interest, left the room and the Vice Chairman of the Committee chaired the meeting during the determination of this item. 


The Head of Development reported that this application sought permission for the erection of a two-storey building to provide eight apartments as well as the erection of an extension to the existing building to create an additional dwelling. It also sought a new access from Common Hill and 16 parking spaces.


The application site was located on the western side of Common Hill.  It sloped from north to south with a difference of around three metres across the site.  A large building known as Rambledown House was close to the northern boundary with a large shared garden to the south.


Since publication of the report the Council’s Landscape Architect had updated her comments, concluding that the revised plans as presented at the meeting would not adversely affect the character of the area in terms of landscape impact, and that it was of a scale that would not look out of place.  She also considered the proposed amenity space to be suitable. 


The presenting officer clarified that there was no planning requirement for proposed market housing within the built up area boundary to be allocated for local need, and therefore the statement within the report that the proposal did not include a mechanism for local housing did not mean that the applicant was at fault. 


The Parish Council supported the application.  There had been 20 representations objecting to the application and 37 in support, and two commenting on the proposal. 


Since publication of the report, a further two letters of objection repeating previous objections had been received.  One further letter had also been received expressing concern that the drainage strategy needed to ensure water does not drain onto other properties. 


Two members of the public spoke in objection to the application.  The owner of Rambledown House, the applicant and the applicant’s agent all spoke in support of the proposal.  A representative of the Parish Council also spoke in support of it. 


Members considered the officer’s planning assessment which indicated that the key issues for consideration in determining the proposal were: the principle of development; housing need; design, layout and appearance; amenity impact; highways; and landscape and trees.


Members concluded that, whilst the principle of development on the site was acceptable and the proposal provided a housing benefit, the quantum of development on the site would create a cramped layout and lead to unacceptable noise and disturbance, in particular for neighbouring residents in the vicinity of the parking area.




That planning application DC/19/1226 be refused for the following reasons:


01   The combination of the scale of the apartment building, extension to the existing building, vehicular driveway and parking infrastructure to serve the proposed 9 additional apartments would create a cramped layout and form of development which would significantly reduce the spacing around the existing and proposed buildings within the site. The proposed development would not reflect the distinctive semi-rural spacious character of residential development within the area of West Chiltington Common and would conflict with policies 32 and 33 of the Horsham District Planning Framework (2015).


02   The proposal would create a considerable increase in general noise activity and vehicular movements in a currently quiet and tranquil backland garden environment. This would cause a harmful and unacceptable degree of noise disturbance to the neighbouring properties that surround the site and would conflict with policy 33 of the Horsham District Planning Framework (2015).

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