Bungalow Extension Goes Before Planners

Council Chambers at the Old Wesleyan Chapel

Controversial plans to develop a bungalow into a 5-bedroomed family home could be passed if further negotiations satisfy objectors.

Dr and Mrs Schwarz want to extend High Pines at McFarlands Down so that each of their children can have a bedroom and accommodation can be offered for an elderly relative.

Office space is also needed as part of the redevelopment to the home, which has seen no major alternations since 1958. That’s because the couple work as freelancers.

Neighbours objected to the scale of the original plan so the applicants have reduced the roof height from 6.7m to 6.4m. A proposed rear extension has been reduced by 40cm to 6m and a conservatory at the back of the building will be trimmed down to 2.2m.

The Tugwells, who live at Minalto, objected to the height, which they believe will block their light, especially in winter. They’re worried about being overlooked too, but some windows have now been dropped from the plan.

More neighbours, Mr and Mrs Bright and The Wornes, don’t feel the plans are in keeping and are worried that the appearance of McFarlands Down will be altered by a building of the size proposed.

The Tugwells have questioned why the applicants bought a small bungalow when they required a house three times the size. And Cllr Chris Thomas was also concerned that the applicants may come back for further extensions in the future.

Planning Chair Gaz O’Neil reminded Chris they could only assess the current application and Cllr Amanda Martin felt that the site could accommodate an extended property. She said she understood the family’s desire for more space and couldn’t criticise their desire to have a bigger house.

Amanda said the development represented a generous increase but she didn’t have an issue with enlarging a small house.

Members didn’t decide on the application or defer it. The Planning Officer and Cllrs O’Neil and Martin will visit the site and see whether objections can be overcome by adding planning conditions.

If agreements can be reached, planning could be passed on delegated powers. If they can’t agree, Craig Dryden said it would have to come before the planning committee again.


13 Responses to Bungalow Extension Goes Before Planners

  1. David September 24, 2012 at 8:32 am

    Sadly, being Scillonian is a handicap these days.

  2. pete September 24, 2012 at 7:42 am

    ooops sorry claudia didnt mean to call you fran. must be the pain killers ( and frans easier to spell) 🙂

  3. Sam Mallon September 23, 2012 at 10:31 pm

    What is “in keeping” at McFarlands Downs?? There are so many different buildings. From new, large dwellings, to run down and dilapidated ones, some of which are quite frankly an eyesore. I think so long as the alterations are done sympathetically, people’s privacy is not compromised, views obscurred, or light blocked I can’t really see what the issue is.

    I think we should be doing our best to attract young, profesional families here. After all, the youngsters are our next generation and we need them to keep our islands going. As a returning islander myself, I think it is brilliant that more of us want to “come home”.

  4. Keri Jones September 23, 2012 at 9:53 pm

    Hello Claudia. I’m sorry that you feel that the report has not reflected your application. Let me know of any changes that you think are appropriate. The information has all been gleaned from the Council planing documentation, on which the members made their decision. The paperwork does, for example, refer to a conservatory. To quote the application- (P153 on the planning agenda) ‘The revised plans have also reduced the conservatory/diner to the rear of the property from 3.7 metres down to 2.2 metres. ‘

  5. pete September 23, 2012 at 8:29 pm

    sad to see the small and narrow minded views still come to the surface when young families containing solid scilloniian roots come before planning.
    we had the same thing back in 1997 when we went for full plans to build. Luckily for us we had some of the most persistent councillors on our side and after a deferral got a narrow in favour vote second time round..thing is the ones that were outspoken against us were also from old scillonian famillies…i found it quite hard to take in,all we Wanted to try and do is to marry, build a house, have children and settle in scilly.
    Macfarlands downs has changed somewhat since my grandad helped build most of the bungalows up there… you cant discriminate and turn down a development of one of the last old ones when all the way up and down the lane they have been rebuilt
    bigger or extended.
    good luck fran dont let them get you down.

  6. Todd Stevens September 23, 2012 at 6:25 pm

    Planners here need to get a grip sometimes. They’ll say no to- or place silly requests on perfectly reasonable plans- then allow monstrosities like that huge steel thing going up down porthcressa!

  7. Claudia Schwarz September 23, 2012 at 5:42 pm

    …and thanks to Stuart too!!!

  8. Claudia Schwarz September 23, 2012 at 2:01 pm

    Thanks Todd, Fiona and Simon for your support. Unfortunately the reporting on radio Scilly wasn’t quite accurate. Our plans, for which we have followed guidance from the planning office from the outset involve knocking down an existing 5 metre extension and water tank at the back of our house and replacing it with a 5.25 metre extension with roof space above for a bedroom. We’ve also asked to raise the original roof a bit higher so we have enough headroom for two more bedrooms for the kids to share. There is no conservatory..we are knocking one down but not replacing it. The room for a granny is one of the four (not five) bedrooms, especially as she comes to look after our children when we are both on call. We are a local family and although my husband goes away to work, I would like to think that I’m still fairly useful as the Island’s only Paramedic!

  9. Stuart September 23, 2012 at 11:28 am

    I don’t see what the problem is, when you look at some of the extensions that have been shoe horned onto other property’s dotted around the islands.
    City’s, town’s, villages are dynamic places that change with the times according to the needs of the population.
    Do the people objecting actually live along McFarlands down?

  10. Simon Wallace September 23, 2012 at 11:02 am

    Well said Fiona!

  11. Fiona Robson September 22, 2012 at 8:19 pm

    I think you will find the family do live here permanently. The husband/father does work away like many other men on these islands, which is what happens. His wife is from an old established Scillonian family and they have four children. We need young families encouraged to stay here. If this means extending an affordable home to accommodate their growing family, then so be it.
    Good gracious me, all of you who now have grown up families, just try to remember how difficult it is with a growing family and let this extension go ahead.
    In answer to the problem of being overlooked, do you really think people are that interested in what you are doing that they spend
    their life looking out of the window looking at their neighbours!

  12. Jenny September 22, 2012 at 12:08 pm

    Is this an April Fool. Purchase a two bedded modest bungalow and request a 3 or 4 times it’s orginial size extension, turning it into a very big house, with of course with room for granny’s occassional visit, study and the most essential to quality of life a conservatory. If this is permitted it will be open season on doubling or trebling the size of your home on the Isles. How will the already very fragile road, water and sewage infrastructure cope? The family do not even permanantly live on the Isles.

  13. Todd Stevens September 21, 2012 at 1:00 pm

    Fear of being overlooked? Come down pilots retreat and see the 3 floored monstrosities that have been allowed to go up above our place!!