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Dare I object to my neighbours planning permission?

(98 Posts)
billybunter4 Mon 08-Feb-16 12:46:32

I have new neighbours but don't want to sour our relationship before it's even started by objecting to their planning application. They have a very quirky original portico on the front of their house that they want to demolish but we live in a conservation area & I'd prefer to see period details like this preserved. It's the sort of detail that many modern couples might consider an eyesore but I love it. What do I do? It would be horrible to create bad relations before we've even got to know each other.

Hoppinggreen Mon 08-Feb-16 12:50:50

I would butt out, you might love their Portico but they clearly don't and it's on their house - IF they get planning permission ( big IF in a conservation area) the ask if you could buy it off them and have it on the front of your house.
It's not going to affect you so not worth annoying your neighbours over.

Mag314 Mon 08-Feb-16 12:50:58

I'd object to that, because it could actually effect the value of your house too.

I think a row of houses where they all have retained their period details, they're all worth more as a result of that. ONE fucks up, and they're all then on a row where only some of the houses have the period details.

So I would very politely object to them removing that feature.

KeepCoolCalmAndCollected Mon 08-Feb-16 12:53:33

Is the property listed?
Are the other houses next to it the same and would it look the odd one out if it was removed?

liquidrevolution Mon 08-Feb-16 12:53:39

You can anonymously object - just ask them to withold your name and address. If you look online at the planning website you can see other applications and there is usually one comment that says name withheld.

If it is in a conservation area they are unlikely to get permission to remove an original or early feature, but objecting will highlight the issue so less likely to slip through the net.

billybunter4 Mon 08-Feb-16 12:55:00

What's the point of having planning consultations Hopping if we're only to keep our mouths shut when actually we are unhappy. When I did work on my house, everyone else was able to have their say. The front of a house affects the enjoyment everyone on the street. I don't object to the rest of their works.

billybunter4 Mon 08-Feb-16 12:58:18

On our planning website it says to be aware if you comment your details will be made available for all to see.

FunkyPeacock Mon 08-Feb-16 12:58:51

It is perfectly reasonable to object

If they are reasonable people then they won't take it personally

Whether they get given permission will ultimately depend on a whole host of factors and is highly unlikely to depend solely on your objection so I wouldn't lose sleep over it

wonkylegs Mon 08-Feb-16 13:00:55

Make sure you are objecting for valid planning reasons (retention of original features in a conservation area) and keep emotion out of it. It's perfectly acceptable to object but I think it gets nasty if people get emotional about it and make it about personal issues (value of their house, I don't like it etc that aren't planning issues and are a bit more subjective) and it's easier for people to get annoyed at them as its a value judgement rather than a factual point.
You might be worried about it souring relations but if it annoys you and ignore it and you have to live with it then relations will be soured just in a different way.

Viviennemary Mon 08-Feb-16 13:02:15

It is their house after all. But if you want to object then do so. But I'd only object if I thought it would have any effect. Do the other houses have this type of structure. Speak to your other neighbours and get their take on it before you do anything.

Joysmum Mon 08-Feb-16 13:04:13

If it were that important it'd be listed.

I'm surprised they need permission to demolish it given it'd be very small in area, I'd expect it for replacing the structure though.

Even so, it's your right to object if you feel that strongly about the look of their house.

Whilst conservation areas are there and usually thought of to conserve, they are just as much in place to ensure changes enhance the area and look so rather than preservation so if what's being put back is deemed an improvement then your objection won't be upheld.

billybunter4 Mon 08-Feb-16 13:06:46

This property is unique in the row in that it is bigger than all the others and so has more special 'details' in its' architecture.

QuietWhenReading Mon 08-Feb-16 13:06:51

My cousin has just finished work on her house. All her neighbours at the back objected (for a variety of fairly spurious reasons). The council disagreed and gave them permission.

It hasn't caused any issues so far, everyone is being very grown up.

Joysmum Mon 08-Feb-16 13:10:13

If it were that special it'd be listed in its own right. I don't think you'll be successful on the basis of what's being removed on that basis, but they'd need to prove that the work maintains or enhances the area.

mybloodykitchen Mon 08-Feb-16 13:13:14

Fairly sure you can object anonymously. Fairly sure in a conservation area that the chances of getting permission to destroy a 'quirky original portico' are roughly zero.

Yseulte Mon 08-Feb-16 13:18:43

Conversation areas are often very strict about what you can do to the front of a building, if it was original to the house it's quite possible they won't get planning consent anyway. The areas are technically designated heritage assets.

It's important to quote the local conservation area strategy in your objection, so have a look for it online.

I don't see why the neighbours should take it personally, but do you really need them to be your friends?

billybunter4 Mon 08-Feb-16 13:20:27

No one wants sour relations with their neighbours.

Yseulte Mon 08-Feb-16 13:20:27

Fairly sure in a conservation area that the chances of getting permission to destroy a 'quirky original portico' are roughly zero.

That's certainly the case in London. I don't know if other areas within the UK are less strict.

bojorojo Mon 08-Feb-16 13:21:15

Conservation areas do have special planning status and it is not the same as a listed building. The conservation area will be seeking to ensure the area looks harmonious and in keeping with the era of the area. A listed property can be in the middle of a new housing estate. The listing is for a whole building and unlikely to be for a portico.

I would check the description of the conservation area and ask the Council if the preservation of a portico (is it in a row of porticos?) is important within the conservation area. The planning officer assigned to the application should speak to you. My guess is that it will be important and the frontage of this house will be part of what is being preserved. Often conservation area rules are very tough!

Yseulte Mon 08-Feb-16 13:21:52

I recently objected to a massive extension by a new neighbour. I don't give a bugger what they think of me. I've got plenty of friends.

UKSky Mon 08-Feb-16 13:22:14

We had an extension done over 10 years ago. The neighbours across the road (who had already extended their house to the side) objected to our extension, despite the fact it would have no impact on them at all as ours was straight out from the back of the house and can't even be seen by them.

In fact they object to everyone in the streets planning applications, despite them being the first to have done it.

We are all still friends. We understood they had a right to object, didn't mean we stopped liking them. We just think they are rather hypocritical. In fact, it has never been mentioned in person by us or them.

It's what the planning application process is for.

HanYOLO Mon 08-Feb-16 13:34:43

If its in a conservation area and the portico is part of the original fabric/reason why the area has the conservation order, the likelihood is that their planning permission would be refused.

Depends on how busy the conservation officer is but round here they get very excited if you so much as want to get double glazing.

Are the houses listed?

billybunter4 Mon 08-Feb-16 13:39:26

houses not listed but the whole area has been made a conservation area.

billybunter4 Mon 08-Feb-16 13:42:53

Re-reading the letter I've been sent, in the small-print it says 'We will only consider comments where the name and address of the person making the comments is given. Anonymous comments will not be taken into account.'

wonkylegs Mon 08-Feb-16 13:43:00

In order for a building to be listed it needs to meet certain criteria, a conservation area may deem certain features important despite them not being important enough for a listing.
Conservation areas can differ greatly in how strictly they are enforced and what is enforced the devil is in the detail of the individual CA status.
We live in a conservation area where we cannot demolish or build anything or do any work to trees without permission but we can replace windows/roof etc with whatever we want (we went for timber replica windows but not everybody has been so sympathetic). Some areas are far stricter and you need permission to do almost anything including painting your door.

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