Shropshire Star

What developer said to town council that tried to block housing scheme

A controversial project for a small housing plot in Ellesmere town centre was approved by county planners after developers hit back at objections from the town council.


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Applicants for the single property scheme on the corner of Willow Road and Brownlow Road took issue with town council comments that the property would spoil the area at a meeting of Shropshire Council’s planning committee – saying the town hall opposite was “hardly beautiful”.

The scheme proposed by Seta Property Holding Company of Weston Rhyn will see a single three-bedroom property built on the site, after the planning committee voted unanimously to approve the application.

Ellesmere Town Council had lodged a lengthy objection to the proposals, saying the development would jeopardise the “unique character and charm of the surrounding area”.

Town councillor Amanda Weeks told the committee the town council had not changed their views on the application.

“The biggest frontage is on Willow Street which is adjacent to the Ellesmere conservation area and should follow the line of the Willow Street properties,” she said.

“The property represents over-development, it is far too big for the site, it is only 1.7 metres from the Willow Street pavement.

“As the site is so sloping, a lowering of 0.6 metres is not sufficient to stop the property from being completely dominant along that road.”

The town council had also raised concerns about the impact of the building on an adjacent property on Brownlow Road.

However Andrew Jones, of Chartland Homes, acting as planning agent for the applicant, said he did not believe that the new house would unduly affect the natural light to its neighbour, stating that the windows facing the new development were not “primary windows to habitable rooms”.

“We believe this site is an obvious plot. It’s vacant land within an otherwise built up area within the town boundary,” he said.

“We disagree with [town council comments] on the uniqueness, charm or beauty of the area. It’s perfectly pleasant – the town hall opposite can hardly be described as beautiful!

“The house fits comfortably on the plot, continuing the building line of houses on Brownlow Road, and will provide an attractive end to the street corner.

“It’s incorrect to say it is in any way out of scale.”

A report from Shropshire Council’s conservation team described the effect on the nearby conservation area to be “negligible”.

Ellesmere county councillor Geoff Elner said he had been approached by a number of people in relation to the development since it was lodged, with “one or two in support, the majority against.”

However Shropshire Council’s northern planning committee backed the decision of its planning officers to approve the scheme with a unanimous vote.

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